If people do not take urgent action onair pollution, Lopez said, “We will never come close to achieving sustainabledevelopment,” Lopez said, citing the warning of WHO director general Dr. TedrosGhebreyesus. In a forum dubbed “Defending PublicHealth from Air Pollution” held recently at St. Paul’s Hospital Iloilo, RamonSan Pascual, executive director of Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) SoutheastAsia, said air pollution is not just an environmental issue. For his part, Paeng Lopez, HealthEnergy Initiative Campaigner of HCWH Southeast Asia, said air pollutionthreatens everyone, particularly the poorest and the marginalized people. “By reducing air pollution, countriescan reduce stroke, heart diseases, and lung cancer, among others,” said Lopez.(PIA/PN) The most affected sectors by airpollution are children, women, and outdoor workers, said Lopez. “Pneumonia is the leading cause ofdeath in children under five years of age; while women working in smokykitchens are exposed to high levels of household air pollution, and people whowork outdoors such as street vendors and traffic enforcers are affected by airpollution,” he added. Air pollution is a silent killer,causing seven million deaths around the world every year, he stressed. ILOILO City – The health sector hereshould lead the campaign against air pollution, considering the negativeeffects of polluted air to children, women and other vulnerable sectors,according to an international nongovernment organization (NGO) that works totransform healthcare worldwide. “The World Health Organization (WHO)considers it a health concern as well. Air pollution has become a leading causeof death,” said Pascual.