2.4 Million Deaths Per Year
According to the WHO, atmospheric pollution is the cause of 2.4 million human deaths in the world. (1) In France, the 11 million tonnes of pollutants emitted into the atmosphere each year are responsible for 30 000 premature deaths. (2) (3) On average, these pollutants represent one year less life expectancy per person, causing heart failure as well as respiratory and reproductive disorders. They also increase the risk of allergic respiratory dieseases (like asthma, which has doubled over the last 20 years). [Debate]
In industrialised countries, emissions from the main pollutants have greatly diminished as a result of both deindustrialisation and stricter regulations. (4) Since the 1980s, sulphur dioxide (SO2) discharge has decreased by 85%. Since the 1990s, lead emissions have fallen by over 96%, thanks to the introduction of lead-free petrol.