China has worked to reduce its coal consumption in recent years but the air quality in cities like Beijing is still notoriously poor and a major health hazard.
Particulate matter and toxic chemical pollutants are a pervasive problem in the air people breathe in many places. Poor air quality causes health problems worldwide and is a factor in diseases such as asthma, heart disease and lung disease.
Poor air quality is a serious problem. Exposure to air pollution is linked to the premature deaths of an estimated 6.5 million people every year. This makes air pollution the fourth largest threat to human health. Only high blood pressure, dietary risks, and smoking are a bigger danger.