Fundamentals for cleaner and healthier air

A World Bank study maintains that air pollution costs the world trillions of dollars a year and contributes to the premature death of millions of people a year around the world. Ambient air pollution remains the fourth leading cause of premature global deaths, causing lung cancer, heart disease and respiratory problems. Air quality problems are growing in many developing countries, whose development is being severely impeded by this, with more than 85% of the global population living in areas where World Health Organization (WHO) air quality guidelines are exceeded. According to WHO air quality guidelines, pollution should be restricted to a daily particulate matter of 25 micrograms per cubic meter. However, in February, Beijing and New Delhi typically see daily levels at or above 300 micrograms per cubic meter – 1,200% higher than WHO guidelines. Despite previous policy efforts that have been successful in reducing particulate matter and trace gases in North America and Europe, adverse health effects are still found at low levels of air pollution.

Governments, the private sector and people will all need to work together to find solutions to this prevailing problem. The nonwovens industry has been making tremendous strides in the development of more effective media for air filtration, to for example improve indoor air quality.

Visitors and exhibitors at INDEX™17, the world’s leading nonwovens exhibition held in Geneva from 4th-7th April 2017, will have the chance to hear from “Big Picture” speaker, Prof. Nino Künzli, Deputy Director, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Dean, Swiss School of Public Health, on the health effects of air pollution and the implications for policy makers, citizens and the industry. “The global scientific community has made enormous progress in understanding the health effects of complex air pollutant mixtures and the methods to quantify the public health impact are now widely used both globally and locally,” said Prof. Nino Künzli. “However, lining up policy actions with science to protect public health remains a challenge to be addressed by the global community of researchers, industry and policy makers.”

INDEX17 will take place in parallel to partner filtration conference and exhibition FILTREX™ for the first time this year. The free opening session of the conference on 5th April will feature keynote speaker Prof. Nino Künzli, who will put forward the key challenges and opportunities faced by the filtration industry, and renowned experts in the field will then discuss how these are being addressed, including through the use of nonwovens.

Key topics covered at FILTREX include:

  • Health effects of fine and ultra-fine particles on humans
  • Standardisation
  • Quality assurance and testing
  • Fibres for filtration media
  • Application oriented solutions
  • Innovations in nonwoven filtration media

Visitors from around the world will have the opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge of the latest developments in nonwovens for filtration applications.

For more information on FILTREX@INDEX please go to the event page on the EDANA website www.edana.org or www.index17.org