The effects of pollution on the environment have always been well-publicised, but an alarming new piece of research has shed light on the threat it poses to our children’s health.
A new study has found that exposure to traffic fumes could actually slow a child’s progress at school.
Researchers from the Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology in Barcelona studied primary school-aged children in Spain, assessing the memory and attentiveness of those aged between seven and 10.
Alarmingly, they found that pupils at schools with clean air showed higher improvements from year to year in comparison to children in schools polluted with high levels of nitrogen dioxide and ultra-fine particles.
Commenting on the findings, researchers wrote: “The findings suggest that the developing brain may be vulnerable to traffic-related air pollution well into middle childhood.”
This study follows yet another concerning piece of research which claimed that air pollution also raises the risk of suicide among middle-aged men.
The US study, carried out across more than 1,500 people who took their lives in Salt Lake County, Utah, found that males between the ages of 36 and 64 were most prone to suicide after breathing in smog caused by factories and cars.
This adds a whole new level of concern to the release of harmful air emissions, and we hope government authorities are taking this new finding seriously.