Air pollution from fires hits poorest hardest: study
People in poorer countries are disproportionately suffering from air pollution spewed from the increasing scourge of fires in forests and fields around the world, according to new research published yesterday. Landscape fires include blazes in forests, shrub, grass, pastures and agricultural lands, whether planned or uncontrolled such as the wildfires that have ravaged countries including Algeria, Canada and Greece this year. They generate smoke that can travel up to thousands of kilometres, creating public health risks, including increases in mortality and worsening of heart and lung-related illnesses. Ambient air pollution caused some 4.5 million deaths in 2019, according to a study published in Lancet Planetary Health.