There was bad news in a study of global health hazards, with auto emissions making the list for the time ever in the study. Much of this has to do with high volumes of vehicles being added to roads in China and India. According a study published in The Lancet, “Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study” for 2010, air pollution, mostly from ambient particulate matter from auto emissions, joined the list along with high blood pressure, tobacco smoke, and alcohol abuse.
The GBD study showed that in 2010, 3.2 million people around the world died from diseases caused by air pollution; of these fatalities, over two million were in Asia, with the bulk in east Asia and China, and south Asia and India. These fatalities represent a 400% increase in air-pollution related disease since 2000. It may also be that the 2010 figures were accurately measured for the first time, according to David Pettit, director of the Southern California Air Programs at the Natural Resources Defense Council. Even if inflated, the study illustrates a serious problem in the region, and the world, that will need to be addressed through aggressive action to reverse the trend, the study says.