In many countries public enemy number one is the air that people breathe, or try to breathe. This is the problem that is now afflicting India, in New Delhi more precisely. The capital has just lived through one of the worst episodes of air pollution in its history.
Many countries who are rapidly developing are suffering from bad air pollution in the cities. China ia another country that suffers as well from air pollution.
This problem of the air that we breathe is serious; globally, air pollution is the fourth top cause of death. Estimations are that 6.5 million people have died from air pollution globally, of both indoor and outdoor pollution.
Obviously only strong public policy can solve the problem. Megacities are mushrooming now exposing many more people to the problem. China, India and Russia have the highest number of deaths due to air pollution as they have the most people. As well, they are suffering from the legacy of old dirty industries and fleets of aging diesel cars.
In the end it comes down to what the public want. Once the outrage has reached a peak the political leaders will be forced to move on the issue and will try to solve it. It was only after the fog of 1952 did the people of Britain demanded change and cleaner air. The tipping point for India could be the New Delhi fog as well. Unfortunately people have to die and be sick before officials decide to move.