Politics 2023-09-15T04:43:16+03:00
Ukrainian news
Blogger Yelena Likhach: diseases caused by environmental problems are a threat to children in both poor and ri

Blogger Yelena Likhach: diseases caused by environmental problems are a threat to children in both poor and rich countries


Children in high-income countries are just as vulnerable to diseases caused by environmental problems as those living in low-income regions. This is stated by blogger and publicist Yelena Likhach in a blog on Medium "When status and money do not matter: the climate crisis will affect all the children of the world".

"A concerned man and wonderful actor Orlando Bloom on his Instagram called on global leaders to take immediate action to drastically cut harmful emissions. Otherwise, by 2050, every child on the planet will be exposed to global warming effects. It is not clear why this is ignored by the leaders of the world, addressed by the actor. The modern world has no boundaries. For example, natural disasters due to climate change happen everywhere - both in Pakistan and in Germany," says the blogger.

According to her, the polluted air provokes conjunctivitis, eye irritation, severe coughs and spasms in children at best, and at worst – bronchial asthma.

"So, today 9 out of 10 people in the world breathe polluted air. This results in 7 million deaths every year! A third of all deaths from cardiovascular disease and cancer are due to dirty air! Another acute problem is bad indoor air. This is due to the use of polluting fuels for cooking, home heating and lighting. Because of this, predominantly in Asian and African countries, 4 million people die each year. Women and children suffer the most, because they spend more time indoors," says the publicist.

Yelena Likhach believes that pediatricians' advice on how to raise a healthy child is completely unrealistic. After all, they offer something that most parents do not have access to. For example, frequent walks in the fresh air, swimming in clean bodies of water, eating healthy food, and living in a house in the woods.

"You’d better tell me where 90% of parents will get the money for all this? What are we talking about if millions of children do not even have the opportunity to follow basic rules of hygiene? Do you think the children who survived the terrible August flooding in Pakistan had a chance to brush their teeth regularly, for example?" asks the blogger.

The author of the blog provides the example of how two years ago the Commission of International Experts on Child and Adolescent Health conducted a study of 180 countries on the criteria of child survival, well-being, education and nutrition, as well as income and environmental conditions.

"The top ten of the ranking includes Norway, South Korea, the Netherlands, France, Ireland, Denmark, Japan, Belgium, Iceland and the United Kingdom. The worst child welfare is observed in Mali, Niger, Somalia, Chad, and the Central African Republic (180th place). This distribution is not surprising. Yet, that is not what scares me the most. The same Child Prosperity Index, considering also CO2 emissions, turns that list upside down. Thus, Norway is only 156th, South Korea is 166th, and the Netherlands – 160th. Simultaneously, Burundi, Chad, and Somalia have the lowest carbon dioxide emissions," continues Yelena Likhach.

Another study conducted by the UN Children's Fund Innocenti also confirms this trend: Finland, Iceland and Norway come third in the list of countries ensuring a healthy environment for their children, while ranking last in the world for harmful emissions and e-waste.

"But the rich also cry! It is also incorrect to say that children in wealthy countries have a cloudless, healthy future. It turns out that 20 million children in states of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development have increased blood lead levels! Even relatively low levels of this element can cause reduced intelligence, behavioral disorders and learning difficulties in young children. In Belgium, the Czech Republic, Israel, the Netherlands, Poland, and Switzerland, every 12th child is exposed to pesticides, which is fraught with cancer. But the main problem is that rich countries, having much more opportunities to maintain the environmental balance in the world, not only put their children at risk, but also actively pollute the environment in other regions of the world," summarizes Yelena Likhach.

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