WHO’s Global Air Quality Guidelines 

October 26, 2021

Last month, for the first time since 2005, The World Health Organisation (WHO) tightened its air quality guidelines in a bid to save millions of lives.

We have known the impact of air pollution on health for some time but WHO’s new guidelines show clear evidence of the effect pollution has on human health, and at lower concentrations than previously thought.

It is estimated that exposure to air pollution causes 7 million premature deaths each year, with the loss of millions more healthy years of life. New guidelines from the WHO recommend air quality levels of six pollutants including particulate matter (PM), nitrogen dioxide (NO?), ozone (O?), sulphur dioxide (SO?) and carbon monoxide (CO). The WHO have warned that exceeding the new levels stated in their renewed air quality guidelines is associated with significant risk to health and countries are being urged to utilise the guidelines to reduce health issues and save lives.

In a press conference announcing the change to air quality guidelines, WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated that “Almost everyone in the world is exposed to unhealthy levels of air pollution; inhaling dirty air increases the risk of respiratory diseases like pneumonia, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and increases the risks of severe COVID-19. It’s also a major cause of non-communicable diseases like heart disease, stroke and cancer.”

Air pollution is now the world’s largest environmental risk and the effect is has on our health is no longer an issue we can ignore, so the WHO’s updates guidelines are a welcome resource. Bringing air pollution and the damage it causes to the forefront of everyone’s minds can only be a good thing to promote change.

There is no doubt however the we have a long way to go to meet these new guidelines and worryingly, studies have shown that air quality indoors may be several times worse than outdoors. Considering most of us spend 90% of our time inside, the health implications of this are significant. 

So, how can we improve indoor air quality? Well, there is only one way to know your air is of good quality, and that’s through our Genano technology which decontaminates air from particles down to nanosize. Originally developed for hospital facilities, Genano devices have achieved incredible results, giving peace of mind to countless people around the world. 

As Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus put it; “there is nothing more essential to life than air…” and we couldn’t agree more. To find out more about our Genano devices and how they can help improve air quality, get in touch. 

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