Skip to navigationSkip to content
CRYSTAL CLEAR

Do we have a right to clean air?

Beijing shrouded in smog after a sandstorm
Reuters/Tingshu Wang
Health warning.
  • Annalisa Merelli
By Annalisa Merelli

Reporter

Ella Kissi-Debrah was only nine when she died in London in 2013. The cause was respiratory failure, but it’s pollution that killed her.

That is what the coroner determined in a landmark case, which explicitly linked the girl’s death to levels of nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter higher than the World Health Organization (WHO) says are safe. Vehicles were the main cause of such emissions, which were especially high where the Kissi-Debrah family lived.

The coroner established that the exposure to air pollutants exacerbated the victim’s asthma and respiratory problems, hastening her death.

Enrich your perspective. Embolden your work. Become a Quartz member.

Your membership supports a team of global Quartz journalists reporting on the forces shaping our world. We make sense of accelerating change and help you get ahead of it with business news for the next era, not just the next hour. Subscribe to Quartz today.

Membership includes:

こちらは英語版への登録ページです。
Quartz Japanへの登録をご希望の方はこちらから。