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Deathly Air Pollution: More Deadly Than Cigarettes

Toxic air is killing more people in Europe than tobacco smoking, according to new research published in the European Heart Journal. The number of early deaths caused by air pollution is double previous estimates and the lives of 800,000 people worldwide are cut short by an average of more than two years, the scientists calculated. Although air pollution enters through the lungs, its impact via the bloodstream on heart disease and strokes is responsible for twice as many deaths as respiratory diseases. Penny Woods, chief executive of the British Lung Foundation, says, “Toxic air doesn’t just cut lives short. It also seriously affects the health and quality of life of millions of people.”

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