Most of the world breathes unsafe air, taking more than two years off global life expectancy, while the air pollution shortens average life expectancy in India, the second most polluted country in the world after Bangladesh, by five years, relative to what it would be if the new stringent WHO guidelines were met, said the new Air Quality Life Index (AQLI) analysis released on Tuesday.
It also said the pollution would cut 7.6 years of life expectancy of 40% of Indians who live in the Indo-Gangetic plains.
The report analysing AQLI, released by the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC), noted that air pollution is the greatest threat to human health in India in terms of life expectancy, reducing it to by five years whereas child and maternal malnutrition reduces average life expectancy by about 1.8 years, while smoking reduces the average life expectancy by 1.5 years.