Public Health and Environment (PHE)

Burden of disease associated with urban outdoor air pollution for 2008

For 2008, the number of premature deaths attributable to urban outdoor air pollution is estimated to amount to 1.34 million worldwide. Of these, 1.09 million deaths could be avoided if the mean annual Air Quality Guideline values of PM10=20μg/m3 and PM2.5=10μg/m3 were implemented.

The number of total deaths attributable to outdoor air pollution presents an increase of 16% as compared to the previous figure of 1.15 million deaths for the year 2004. This increase is linked to recent increases in both air pollution concentrations and the total population affected as cities grow.

Afr: Sub-Saharan Africa; Amr: Americas; Emr: Eastern Mediterranean; Eur: Europe; Sear: South-East Asia; Wpr: Western Pacific; HI: High income; LMI: Low and middle income.

Additional details on the database are provided in the "Methods used for estimating the burden of disease from urban outdoor air pollution".