From good intentions to proven interventions: Effectiveness of actions to reduce the health impacts of air pollution

Luisa V. Giles, Prabjit Barn, Nino Künzli, Isabelle Romieu, Murray A. Mittleman, Stephan van Eeden, Ryan Allen, Chris Carlsten, Dave Stieb, Curtis Noonan, Audrey Smargiassi, Joel D. Kaufman, Shakoor Hajat, Tom Kosatsky, Michael Brauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


Background: Associations between air pollution and a multitude of health effects are now well established. Given ubiquitous exposure to some level of air pollution, the attributable health burden can be high, particularly for susceptible populations. Objectives: An international multidisciplinary workshop was convened to discuss evidence of the effectiveness of actions to reduce health impacts of air pollution at both the community and individual level. Te overall aim was to summarize current knowledge regarding air pollution exposure and health impacts leading to public health recommendations. Discussion: During the workshop, experts reviewed the biological mechanisms of action of air pollution in the initiation and progression of disease, as well as the state of the science regarding community and individual-level interventions. Te workshop highlighted strategies to reduce individual baseline risk of conditions associated with increased susceptibility to the effects of air pollution and the need to better understand the role of exposure duration in disease progression, reversal, and adaptation. Conclussion: We have identified two promising and largely unexplored strategies to address and mitigate air pollution-related health impacts: reducing individual baseline risk of cardiovascular disease and incorporating air pollution-related health impacts into land-use decisions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-36
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Health Perspectives
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011


  • Air pollution
  • Antioxidant
  • Cardiovascular
  • Exposure
  • Intervention
  • Public health
  • Respiratory
  • Urban planning


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