We often can’t see or feel air pollution — and yet, it is taking a toll. It’s increasing the risk of disease and raising global temperatures. And in some cases, it can be deadly.

Air pollution is responsible for the early deaths of some 7 million people every year, around 600,000 of who are children, according to the United Nations. That means somebody dies prematurely roughly every five seconds due to poor air quality.

In this episode, we hear stories of how people around the world are calling attention to this invisible killer.

We speak to Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, a mother campaigning to have pollution officially named as her daughter’s cause of death [3:30].

We also talk to Beth Gardiner, the author of Choked, a book about science, politics and personal experiences linked to pollution [12:55].

We hear from entrepreneur Romain Lacombe at Plume Labs about his mission to map out city pollution the way that Google maps out traffic [20:00].

And we learn about how a group of women in Southern California are trying to protect their town from the real-world health impacts of online shopping in an interview with Grist reporter Justine Calma [28:05].

Recommended reading:

  • BBC: Ella Kissi-Debrah: New Inquest Into Girl's 'Pollution' Death
  • Choked: Life and Breath in the Age of Air Pollution
  • Bloomberg: This Wearable Pollution Monitor Detects How Dirty Your Air Is
  • Grist: The Town That Online Shopping Built — and Women Are Trying to Save

Political Climate is produced in partnership with the USC Schwarzenegger Institute and The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation.

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