Not while, because

Nearly one in four deaths are linked to unhealthy environments and are avoidable, a new World Health Organisation study – the first major assessment of environmental risk since 2006 – has shown.

It suggests environmental risks now contribute to more than 100 of the world’s most dangerous diseases, injuries, and kills 12.6 million people a year – nearly one in four or 23% of all deaths.

Of these, two-thirds or 8.2m deaths are from non-communicable diseases (NCDs), such as strokes, cancers and heart illnesses, a significant rise in 10 years, say the authors.

While the number of deaths from infectious diseases, including diarrhoea and malaria, have fallen since 2006, those from NCDs linked to indoor and outdoor air pollution, climate change and exposure to synthetic chemicals have increased, the WHO report says.

Isn’t that good news? We’re not there yet but we’re on the way to conquering infectious disease.

27 thoughts on “Not while, because”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    those from NCDs linked to indoor and outdoor air pollution, climate change and exposure to synthetic chemicals have increased

    Could better than you think. Or not. You can’t really tell.

    Because they are making sh!t up

  2. Who was it said;

    There is no human pleasure worth sacrificing for the sake of a few extra years in a nursing home in Torquay?

    ?

  3. It isn’t certain that CVDs are non-communicable. The rise and fall of heart attack rates in, for instance, the USA and UK looks very much like the rise and fall of an infectious disease.

    P.S. That useful journalistic expression “linked to” is doing fine service there.

  4. So Much For Subtlety

    More cancers than we might think may be infectious as well. Some cancers are certainly caused by viral infections. As our knowledge expands we may well find a lot more are.

    But that won’t give people the chance to bully us for having a pleasant time.

  5. That useful journalistic expression “linked to” is doing fine service there.

    As is “suggests”. Whenever I see either of those in an article on health, I stop reading.

  6. So. As an environmental health risk, where does telling the SAS they are not as tough as they used to be stand?

    I like the pic showing “SAS training” when in fact it’s a pic of SAS hopefuls undergoing selection.

    Plus, the contention is probably true but irrelevant: a Confederate civil war soldier (who could march without boots) was probably “tougher” than his WWII counterpart who stormed the beaches at Normandy, but so what? People change, the job changes, as does “being tough”.

  7. This article, like all such articles, seems to imply that death can be avoided, if we all do as we’re told…

  8. They aren’t telling us to do anything; merely that there’s a fecking awful smog problem in the industrialised cities of China and India, and that smog is not good for the people living there.

    Yes, the people living in smog are still better off than those living in the sticks (hence the non-stop migration from rural to urban parts); but it’s perfectly reasonable for the WHO to point out some of the negative side-effects.

    There are enough former asbestos-removers, miners, and smokers with lung cancer to prove that cancer can be triggered by environmental factors. Disease isn’t the relevant factor here.

  9. So now they are for MORE people on earth?

    No. They want money.

    “There’s an urgent need for investment in strategies to reduce environmental risks in our cities, homes and workplaces,” said Dr Maria Neira, WHO director, department of public health, environmental and social determinants of health. “Such investments can significantly reduce the rising worldwide burden of cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, injuries and cancers, and lead to immediate savings in healthcare costs.”

    This is just base propaganda.

    ‘Air pollution and rapid industrialisation in China, India and elsewhere in south-east Asia and the Pacific regions is now a major cause of deaths and illness, the report finds.’

    The report finds. Hmmm . . . the report is sentient? And how about some death certificates . . . it’s a major cause you know.

  10. Chris Miller

    “Who was it said;

    There is no human pleasure worth sacrificing for the sake of a few extra years in a nursing home in Torquay?”

    It was Kingsley Amis. And it was Weston-super-Mare, which, if you know the place, adds an extra degree of horror.

  11. “Gavin Mortimer, who has written a book about the origins of the SAS, said the special forces unit of today were “not as hard” deep down due to their comparatively pampered upbringings.”

    Said Gavin, crouched in an Amazon waterway, pulling leeches off his testicles and nervously eyeing the 10ft caiman lurking off the opposite bank?

    “Speaking at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature in Dubai..”

    I’m sure the canapes were rather second rate. Oh, the hardship!

  12. Historically, no cities grew organically, but relied on migration for growth.
    Today, some cities are growing organically.
    My report therefore concludes that the environment is improving.

  13. Dear M Worstall

    It makes me wonder what ‘they’ will eventually allow us to die of.

    Boredom perhaps?

    More likely ‘they’ won’t be satisfied until a WHO-ordained lifespan is specified with every available medical intervention administered to achieve that age, followed immediately upon attainment by compulsory euthanasia.

    There will probably a nice selection of Happy Deathday cards.

    What age with ‘they’ chose? Tricky…

    DP

  14. “cancer can be triggered by environmental factors”: oh bugger “triggered”. Cancer can be caused by environmental pollutants e.g. air-borne fibres of blue or brown asbestos. (But almost certainly not white asbestos: whereby hangs another “environmentalist” scandal/fraud/extortion.)

  15. “Isn’t that good news? We’re not there yet but we’re on the way to conquering infectious disease.”

    Yes; most excellent news.

  16. Intractable Potsherd

    It is indeed good news that communicable diseases are falling down the list of causes of death around the globe, just as they have in Westernised countries (which I still think of as interchangeable with “civilised”). It beggars belief that this is not being trumpeted louder, rather than being reported so miserably. Since, as others have noted, no-one lives forever, then other causes have to fill in, and so accidents and other environmental causes will become more likely as the cause of death – and this is a good thing.

    Regarding cancer – the influence of genetics is often ignored. By this, I don’t mean the ones that have clearly identified genetic mutations (e.g. BRCA1 and 2), but a susceptibility to respond to an environmental factor by developing cancer. This is why there are so few people (on a population scale) who respond to asbestos/nicotine/sunshine etc exposure by developing cancer – they have a disposition that others don’t.

  17. The Panic must go on. It provides lots of lucrative funding, and the hysteria needed for control.

    Can anyone ever remember a political or public activist who said: “well we’ve achieved our goal, may as well pack it in and do something else”.

  18. P.S. There was a huge positive interaction between asbestos exposure, and smoking – much the biggest I’ve ever seen in my slight and distant experience of industrial hazard studies. Not only did it exist, but it had a rational explanation: the fibres punctured the cell wall and the carcinogens thereby entered the cell.

  19. Andrew M, you need to get back in line with swivel-eyed opinion here. Smoking, asbestos, mining, and smog are not merely perfectly harmless. In fact they are positively good for you! Especially if you wash them all down with a healthy dose of radiation!

  20. So Much For Subtlety

    Bloke in Germany – “Smoking, asbestos, mining, and smog are not merely perfectly harmless. In fact they are positively good for you! Especially if you wash them all down with a healthy dose of radiation!”

    Small levels of radiation probably are good for you. However much you dislike swivel eyed loons and their medical opinions this report and you are falling into the other fallacy. Just because smoking has been shown to be bad for you, doesn’t mean that every study proving some correlation is equally as valid. The relationship between smoking and lung cancer was robust. Most of these claimed correlations are not.

    And climate change is a fantasy as far as disease control is concerned. At least the swivel eyed loons are cheap.

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