UNICEF has claimed that Pollution can permanently damage a child's brain

UNICEF has claimed that Pollution can permanently damage a child's brain

UNICEF has claimed that Pollution can permanently damage a child's brain

Even as the National Capital and adjoining regions are grappling smog and air pollution for over a month now, the issue has been raised at the highest global level as United Nations worldwide Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) has taken a serious view of the situation.

Satellite imagery reveals that South Asia has the largest proportion of babies living in the worst-affected areas, with 12.2 million babies residing where outdoor air pollution exceeds six times global limits set by the World Health Organization.

There has been the linking between air pollution and respiratory diseases since forever, but UNICEF claimed in a report which claims that there is a growing body of scientific research stating that air pollution can damage a child's brain that too permanently.

The foetus exposed to pollutants suffer from brain development delay until the age of three along with other psychological and behavioral problems with a four-point drop in IQ by age five reports Hindustan Times. The variety of types of pollutants that are in the air across different environments make it hard to determine the full impact of air pollution.

The author of the "Danger In The Air" report, Nicholas Rees, told AFP that toxic pollution is "impacting children's learning, their memories, linguistic and motor skills".

For detailed information, read the full report compiled by UNICEF. Broader suggestions made about "smart urban planning" included absence of coal-plants near schools, clinics, hospitals or anywhere where they can cause harm to children. More than three-quarters of these young children - 12 million - live in South Asia.

UNICEF has claimed that Pollution can permanently damage a child's brain

· Reduce air pollution by investing in cleaner, renewable sources of energy to replace fossil fuel combustion; provide affordable access to public transport; increase green spaces in urban areas; and provide better waste management options to prevent open burning of harmful chemicals. "Parents must protect children from outdoor pollution and from tobacco smoke, cooking fumes and heating fires at home".

"As more and more of the world urbanises, and without adequate protection and pollution reduction measures, more children will be at risk in the years to come".

"We have long known that violence, extreme neglect and lack of nutritious food in the earliest years of life can inhibit children's brain development".

Stating the obvious yet ignored, he added: "Protecting children from air pollution not only benefits children".

UNICEF has suggested that immediate action must be taken to reduce air pollution amid emerging evidence.

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Coastal routes, seafronts and coastal communities are likely to be affected by spray or large waves. It continued that windy weather could cause travel disruptions and power cuts in some areas.

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