The Quality Of the Air We Breathe.


The Quality Of the Air We Breathe.

Air is our most crucial requirement to stay alive. The quality of our health is determined by the quality of the cells that make our body. Cells feed on oxygen and nutrients. We cannot stay for more than 5 minutes without oxygen. During the process of breathing, the lungs put oxygen into the blood stream which get to be transported to the cells and in return carbon dioxide is expelled to the air. Plants need carbon dioxide to make the food we eat through photosynthesis.This process produce oxygen that keep us alive. Animals and plants are therefore dependent on each other.

Without air, animals will die of asphyxia. This is a condition arising when the body is deprived of oxygen, causing suffocation. See from the diagram below the oxygen cycle.

Inhaling fresh air helps clear our lungs and enable us to take deeper, longer breaths of air – which increases the amount of oxygen that is transported to the body cells. Increased oxygen in our bodies therefore translates to greater energy and clarity of mind.

As much as Clean air is fundamental to a healthy human life, the vast majority of the world’s population lives in areas where air quality is pathetic. Air pollution is one of the biggest causes of most NCDs

Air pollution is a global problem. Even in relatively wealthy European countries, air pollution continues to take a heavy toll on health, causing around 400,000 deaths annually. With air quality failing to meet legal standards in the majority of European Union countries, people and environmental organizations are increasingly going to court to demand action. It is time we do this in Kenya. Forcing the government to take action. In Europe and America, they do not compromise on air quality.

For instance, Courts in Germany have ordered regional governments to consider banning diesel in city centers in order to achieve air quality standards. Their vehicles are tested of carbon emissions and if found to be exceeding allowable limits detained and heavily fined. The new vehicles being made are not using fossil fuel but are electric powered. In Kenya, we have all manner of monoxide spewing jalopies that pollute the air to high heaven. Most matatus, Lories and buses use diesel which are heavy pollutants. It is time to ban diesel vehicles on our roads in Nairobi

For Africa as a whole, as at 2013, the estimated economic cost of premature deaths from ambient particulate air pollution was ≈ USD 215 billion. The estimated economic cost of premature deaths from household air pollution was ≈ USD 232 billion.

The 2017 Kenya Economic Survey estimated that 19.9 million Kenyans suffer from respiratory ailments that are exacerbated by poor air quality. This is 50% of our population. This results to unsustainably heavy medical bills both to the government and the citizens.

Unsurprisingly, air pollution within the informal settlements of Nairobi is troublingly high. In the absence of collection of waste by municipal authorities, local communities like for example those in Kibera are forced to burn waste. Indoor air pollution from the use of kerosene and charcoal for cooking has also had an adverse impact on the health of people living in informal settlements.

Across the city in Lunga Lunga, parts of south B & C, Embakasi and some railway residential quarters which are near industrial area have no control over pollution from industries in the vicinity, including, the likes of CHEMRAW EA LTD, a tear gas producing factory.

This cannot be allowed to continue. We need environmental activists like Okiya Omtata who champion human rights and constitutionalism. Since Prof Wangari Maathai passed on, we have not produced another leading defender of the environment. We cannot leave this to government and the commercial sector who are driven by profits

Tomorrow we will discuss what we can do to mitigate this building up disaster. Keep it here for this and more

Your Total Wellness is our concern.

With profound regards,
Maina Azimio.
Conference Speaker and Corporate Trainer in Wellness.
Tell: 0704 561 095 or 0722 516 896

Cc: kevin Ochieng

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