In an article published on September 27, 2017, the non-government organization Health and Environmental Alliance (HEAL) informed about the new report released by the World Health Organization (WHO) in September 2017.

The WHO’s report, titled “Preventing noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) by reducing environmental risk factors,” presents the contribution of environmental factors to the NCDs burden, and highlights “the special relevance of environmental risks for NCDs.” According to the WHO’s estimation, “23% of all global deaths are linked to the environment,” and among these “nearly two thirds” can be attributed to NCDs. Environmental factors potentially contributing to NCDs, as named by the WHO, include “ambient (outdoor) and household air pollution,” as well as “second-hand tobacco smoke, exposure to chemicals, radiation and noise, and occupational risks.” Further, WHO emphasized that “early life exposure to environmental risks, such as chemicals and air pollutants, might increase NCD risk throughout the life course.”

Given the evidence presented in the WHO’s report, HEAL’s executive director Génon Jensen emphasized that NCDs “could be prevented through disease prevention strategies focusing on healthier air, energy, transport and nontoxic environments,” and called on the EU to “prioritize WHO’s evidence and step up its action to promote health.”

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HEAL (September 27, 2017). “New WHO report on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) shows 23% of deaths globally can be prevented through healthier environments.


WHO (2017). “Preventing noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) by reducing environmental risk factors.(pdf)