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Global Health Program
Nine out of ten people on Earth are exposed to harmful levels of PM2.5 pollution, with the highest exposures occurring in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.
For decades, fine particulate matter (PM2.5) levels in the countries of Southeast Europe have remained higher than in other European countries. HEI worked to increase understanding of air pollution and health effects in Southeast Europe with a particular focus on Bulgaria and Serbia. We collaborated with regional experts to gather and synthesize local evidence on health effects, including national, regional, and global air pollution impacts, sources, disease burden, and critical knowledge gaps limiting policy action. This project was supported by the Clean Air Fund. More.
In 2014, HEI initiated the Global Burden of Disease from Major Air Pollution Sources (GBD MAPS) project. Using the GBD framework, investigators for GBD MAPS have estimated the burden of disease attributable to major ambient air pollution sources in countries around the world. So far, we have published three reports under this initiative. This work was supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies. More.
Watch a short video highlighting the connections among air quality, climate, and health.
HEI worked with a team of investigators from Fudan, Tsinghua Universities, and other Chinese research institutions to conduct a comprehensive analysis of emissions from shipping and related health impacts. Estimates were also prepared for the year 2030 under three future emissions control scenarios (see Special Report 22). This work was supported by the Bloomberg Philanthropies.
In 2018 and 2019, HEI evaluated the contribution of household air pollution to ambient fine particle air pollution in Ghana as well as its impact on health (see HEI Communication 19). This project was supported by the Bloomberg Philanthropies.
In 2018, HEI published a critical assessment of the state of the science examining the linkages between household air pollution formed by the burning of solid fuels and noncommunicable diseases (see HEI Communication 18). This project was supported by the Bloomberg Philanthropies.
In the 2000s, with support from foundations, HEI conducted the Public Health and Air Pollution in Asia (PAPA) program (see our coordinated studies in four cities and a comprehensive review of the Asian literature on air pollution and health). The PAPA program sought to inform regional decisions about improving air quality in Asia and was supported by a consortium of funders including the Hewlett Foundation and USAID. More.