North America Current Affairs - 2019

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Air Pollution Raises Diabetes Risk

A study in China has shown that Air pollution raises diabetes risk in China. The findings of the study were based on the data collected from over 88,000 people across 15 provinces, estimating their exposure to PM2.5 based on satellite data from 2004 to 2015.

The study was conducted by researchers from Fuwai Hospital in Beijing and Emory University in the US and was published online by journal Environment International.

Findings of the Study

  • Long-term exposure to harmful smog particles increases the risk of diabetes, The study provides evidence for a link between the country’s air pollution and the disease.
  • Increased prosperity has resulted in changing diets and lifestyles, along with an air pollution crisis that the World Health Organization estimates causes over a million premature deaths every year.
  • The risk of diabetes rose by about 16 per cent for an increase of 10 microgrammes per cubic metre in long-term PM2.5 particle exposure.
  • Similar studies in North America, Europe, Hong Kong and Taiwan have shown links between air pollution with diabetes.

Unites Nations study published in 2017 noted that China is facing the largest diabetes problem in the world with around 11 per cent of its population suffering from metabolic illness. It is expected that the sustained improvement of air quality will help decrease the diabetes epidemic in China.

Month: Categories: Science & TechnologyUPSC

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Regional variations in the World Economic Forums Public Opinion Survey

The findings from the World Economic Forum’s public opinion survey register regional variations on the various issues. Few of them are listed below:

  • When asked how important it is for countries to work together towards a common goal, a global average of 76 per cent said they believe it is either extremely important or very important.
  • The favourable sentiments were strongly felt in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, where 88 per cent share the same view. On the other hand, 61 per cent of Western Europeans and 70 per cent of North Americans said they consider cooperation to be extremely or very important.
  • When asked whether their country has a responsibility to help other countries in the world, South Asia had the highest levels of concurrence with 94 per cent answering positively compared to a global average of 72 per cent. While the North Americans and Western Europeans were the least effusive, with only 61 per cent and 63 per cent respectively answering in the affirmative.
  • At a global level, 57 per cent, said they believe that immigrants are “mostly good” for their new country. But only 40 per cent of those living in Eastern Europe and Central Asia and 46 per cent of respondents in Western Europe subscribe to the same opinion, whereas the South Asians and North Americans exclusively agreed to this.
  • Most people still believe in the power of international cooperation but they share a much less positive view of their own country when it comes to social progress. Only 20 per cent of respondents in Western Europe feel it is either extremely common or somewhat common for someone to be born poor and become rich through hard work.

These variations are attributed to the socio-economic and political reasons.

Month: Categories: InternationalUPSC

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