Every year, air pollution causes around 28,000-36,000 early deaths in the UK, and around 1,400 in the West Midlands alone. One of the main concerns with poor air quality is the presence of harmful fine particles (PM2.5) in the air. These tiny particles can enter the lungs and bloodstream and are linked to a higher risk of hospital admissions and premature deaths from respiratory and cardiovascular diseases, including asthma, stroke, and lung cancer. Additionally, exposure to fine particle pollution has been associated with declining cognitive ability and an increased risk of dementia. To help illustrate the impact of poor air quality, this video shows electron microscope images of pollutant particles collected from the air around the West Midlands. It also describes how these particles can harm the respiratory and cardiovascular systems.
Date made available17 Mar 2023
PublisherUniversity of Birmingham
Date of data productionFeb 2022

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