In 2015, diseases caused by pollution were responsible for an estimated 9 million premature deaths globally. This represented 16% of all deaths worldwide and was three times more deaths than from AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined. By way of comparison, deaths from pollution in 2015 were 15 times greater than from all wars and other forms of violence globally that year. These conclusions are presented in a major report by The Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health
released in October 2017. The report states that “through analyses of existing and emerging data, the Commission reveals pollution’s severe and underreported contribution to the Global Burden of Disease.” The report concludes that pollution is the largest environmental cause of disease and premature death in the world today, and in the most severely affected countries pollution-related disease is responsible for more than one death in four.
The Commission provides a comparison and reconciliation of differences in global estimates of deaths from pollution between the two main sources of global estimates. These two sources are those published by the World Health Organization (WHO) in its Global Health Observatory (Mortality and global health estimates) and the estimates provided by The Lancet in its Global Burden of Disease Study (GBD). The Lancet reports that its previous GBD report, which is published most years, was “the most comprehensive worldwide observational epidemiological study to date.”
The Lancet is a peer-reviewed medical journal which is one of the World’s oldest (founded in 1823) and best known medical journals.
The Lancet Commission on pollution and health Published: October 19, 2017
Mortality and global health estimates WHO. Global Health Observatory