A new research has suggested that about 5.5 million premature deaths occur yearly due to air pollution; both ambient and household.
The household air pollution is due to burning of coal, wood and dung while ambient air pollution is caused by traffic, power generation and agriculture.
Diseases associated with air pollution include heart attack, stroke, lung diseases including lung cancer.
According to Prof. Michael Brauer of the University of British Columbia, air pollution is the fourth highest risk factor for death globally and the greatest environmental risk factor for disease.
Most of the deaths from air pollution occur in China and India, both countries accounting for more than half of all deaths according to the study.
The study concludes that unless something drastic is done to cut down air pollution through reduction in emission, deaths from air pollution will increase significantly in the next twenty years.