Energy and air pollution: World Energy Outlook Special Report 2016
This report released by the International Energy Agency says air pollution has become a major public health crisis leading to around 6.5 million deaths each year, with “many of its root causes and cures” found in the energy industry.
Around 6.5 million premature deaths each year can be attributed to air pollution. Energy production and use are by far the largest man-made sources of air pollutants. Technologies to tackle air pollution are well known. Clean air is vital for good health. Yet despite growing recognition of this imperative, the problem of air pollution is far from solved in many countries, and the global health impacts risk intensifying in the decades to come. The scale of the public health crisis caused by air pollution and the importance of the energy sector to its resolution are the reasons why the IEA is focusing on this critical topic for the first time. Based on new data for pollutant emissions in 2015 and projections to 2040, this special report, the latest in the World Energy Outlook series, provides a global outlook for energy and air pollution as well as detailed profiles of key countries and regions: the United States, Mexico, the European Union, China, India, Southeast Asia and Africa. In a Clean Air Scenario, the report proposes a pragmatic and attainable strategy to reconcile the world’s energy requirements with its need for cleaner air. Alongside the multiple benefits to human health, this strategy shows that resolving the world’s air pollution problem can go hand-in-hand with progress towards other environmental and development goals.