The State of Global Air report 2018


Health Effects Institute & The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, Global

This second issue of the State of Global Air report, a collaboration between the Health Effects Institute and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, expands on last year’s report by adding household air pollution and total air pollution to our discussion of air quality and health for all countries around the globe. It is based on the most recent data available (for 2016) and provides a comprehensive picture of global air pollution and health levels and trends (since 1990).

Who is it for?

The report is designed to introduce citizens, journalists, policy makers, and scientists to the Global Burden of Disease project, a comprehensive effort to estimate and track human exposure to air pollution and its impact on human health around the world.

How can I explore the data?

The interactive pages of this website provide the tools to explore, compare, and download data tables and graphics with the latest air pollution levels and the associated burden of disease in individual countries, as well as their trends over the last 26 years (1990–2016).

Only the beginning

We plan to update the report and website each year, following the annual release of the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) results from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. Annual updates will continue to report on global, national, and regional trends in air quality and health using the latest data. In addition, we plan to dig deeper into the newest results, providing our audience with more detailed coverage in a number of areas, described below.Future updates will provide information about air quality trends and the health impacts of air pollution on sensitive subpopulations (e.g., children and older people). As new analyses are added to the larger Global Burden of Disease study for additional health outcomes (such as diabetes and low birth weight) or additional air pollutants (such as NO2), or measures of impact on health (such as life expectancy), they will be reflected in the State of Global Air report and website.

Sources and impacts of pollution in specific regions

As results become available, we will report in the future on the latest analyses of key sources of air pollution in particular countries and regions and how they contribute to health impacts. This year we present results from two HEI reports on the major sources of air pollution and health burden in China and India. For more details, go to Major Sources of Air Pollution. We also plan to analyze air quality in more detail at the subnational or regional level in several countries for which such data are available, for example, China, India, United Kingdom, and Mexico.

Success stories

What about successful efforts to reduce air pollution? Where have countries or regions made progress? How have they done it? In future updates we plan to feature lessons from countries where air quality and health have improved. Do you have a success story you would like to share? Send us your suggestion through our Contact page.