The latest statistics show that pollution kills 15 times as many people as war and other forms of violence annually.
This makes pollution a leading cause of premature death especially in many smaller low and middle-income countries with poor water sanitation and contaminated indoor air.
Break down of pollution-related deaths in Africa
Nigeria is third in the world and first in the continent in premature pollution deaths with 279,318.
For context, this is almost three times the population of Seychelles. This East African country has 98,185 people according to the World Population Review.
Here are 10 African countries with the highest number of pollution-related deaths:
- Nigeria - 279,318
- Ethiopia - 110,787
- DR Congo -102,477
- Tanzania - 49,773
- Madagascar - 46,876
- Kenya - 45,001
- South Africa- 44,274
- Chad - 42,765
- Niger - 41,284
- Burkina Faso - 32,130
The analysis shows that traditional pollution is responsible for more deaths and disabilities than modern pollution in Africa.
Water pollution (especially unsafe sources) is a major issue, followed by air pollution (mostly from cooking with stoves) and lead.
Overall, India and China have the most pollution-related deaths each year with 2,326,711 and 1,865,566 respectively.