Air pollution, research shows, lowers our ability to fight off infections. It worsens reactions to viruses in people with health challenges like asthma. And it could have a pernicious effect in a pandemic.
Air pollution raises the risk of miscarriage for pregnant women as much as smoking. That was the finding of scientists investigating the impact of air quality on birth outcomes last year, while other studies have shown that pollution can increase the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.
The global outbreak of the novel coronavirus has led to falling carbon emissions due to drops in industrial production and transportation amid nation-wide lockdown measures across the world, forcing countries to meet the goals of the 2015 Paris climate accord, according to a Turkish meteorologist.
Because of the nature of the work and the significant incidence of lung damage from years of exposure to coal dust, silica and diesel exhaust, coal miners may be especially vulnerable to the coronavirus, medical researchers say.