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Global Commission on Pollution + Health section of the site

  • About
  • The Lancet Report
  • Global Pollution Map
  • Solutions Resources
  • Briefing Events
  • Commissioner Portal
  • Partner Portal


  • Video (post when it is ready in April)
  • Overview of Lancet Commission
  • Core Team Leaders
  • Commissioners
  • Authors
  • Advisors
  • Reviewers
  • Partner & Supporting Organizations


Overview of Lancet Commission


The Commission on Pollution and Health is an initiative of The Lancet, the Global

Alliance on Health and Pollution (GAHP), and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount

Sinai, with coordination from the United Nations Environment Programme and the

World Bank. The Commission comprises many of the world’s leading researchers and

practitioners in the fields of pollution management, environmental health and

sustainable development. The aim of the Commission is to reduce air, soil and water

pollution by communicating the extraordinary health and economic costs of pollution

globally, providing actionable solutions to policy-makers and dispelling the myth of

pollution’s inevitability. The Commission Report will be published in The Lancet, one of

the world’s most prestigious and widely read medical journals.




Environmental pollution is the single largest cause of disease and death in low- and

middle-income countries. Data from the World Health Organization and Institute for

Health Metrics and Evaluation suggest that in 2012, exposures to polluted soil, water

and air contributed to an estimated nine million deaths worldwide.1, 2 By comparison,

deaths from HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis caused a combined three million

deaths.3, 4 More than one death in seven worldwide is the consequence of

environmental pollution.5 Despite the tremendous impacts on human health and the

global economy, environmental pollution has been undercounted and insufficiently

addressed in national policies and international development agendas.6, 7

Pollution is strongly linked to poverty.8 The overwhelming majority of the disease

burden from pollution—over 94%—falls on residents of low- and middle-income

countries. It disproportionally affects countries that are ill equipped to deal with the

problem, and vulnerable populations without the resources to protect themselves. The

disproportionate poisoning of the poor is a global environmental injustice. In addition to

impacts on human health, pollution carries an economic cost that is often overlooked.9

Pollution-related illnesses result in direct medical costs, costs to healthcare systems

and opportunity costs resulting from lost productivity and economic growth.

The good news is that many pollution controls are feasible, cost-effective and

replicable. The most effective strategies control pollution at its source. In many

countries, lead has been removed from gasoline, industrial discharges to air and water

have been controlled and highly toxic pesticides have been replaced by safer

substitutes. These actions provide a blueprint that can be replicated globally.

Despite its importance and preventability, environmental pollution has not received the

priority it merits in the international development agenda. Although international aid for

HIV, malaria and tuberculosis exceeded $28 billion in 2013, less than $1billion in

international assistance was allocated to tackle pollution. Solving the pollution problem

requires us to measure and demonstrate its true costs, and the benefits of addressing

it now. With that information in hand, world leaders can explain and justify actions to

solve the problem for current and future generations.



Scope and Goals

The Global Commission on Pollution and Health will reveal pollution’s severe and

underreported contribution to the Global Burden of Disease. It will uncover the

economic costs of pollution to low- and middle-income countries, and compare the

costs of inaction to the costs of available solutions. It will inform key decision makers

around the world about the burden that pollution places on health and economic

development, and about available pollution control strategies and solutions. The

Commission will bring pollution squarely into the international development agenda.


Core Team Leaders

The Commission is chaired by Philip Landrigan, MD, a distinguished professor and

physician, and the Dean for Global Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount

Sinai, and by Richard Fuller, Founder and President of Pure Earth and Secretariat of the

Global Alliance on Health and Pollution.


The work of the Commission is overseen by a Steering Committee comprising:

Philip Landrigan, Commission Co-Chairman and Lead Author of Commission Report

Chapter 1; Richard Fuller, Commission Co-Chairman and Co-Lead Author of

Commission Report Chapter 4; Maureen Cropper, Co-Lead Author of Commission

Report Chapter 2; Alan Krupnick, Co-Lead Author of Commission Report Chapter 2;

Karti Sandilya, Lead Author of Commission Report Chapter 3; David Hanrahan, Co-

Lead Author of Commission Report Chapter 4; Andrew McCartor, Commission

Program Manager; Tim Kasten, representing the United Nations Environment

Programme; and Yewande Awe, representing the World Bank Group

The Chairmen are joined by an esteemed group of Commissioners from around the

world, which includes former heads of state, leaders of development agencies;

Ministers of Heath and Environment; a Nobel Laureate; distinguished physicians,

economists and scientists; noted environmental advocates and public figures.

Research and drafting for the Commission Report is coordinated through the office of

the GAHP Secretariat, Pure Earth, and includes contributions from Commissioners,

partner organizations, advisors, consultants and in-house staff. The Commission

Report will go through three phases of review before publication: an initial review by the

Steering Committee, a review by the Commissioners and a full peer-review according

to the internal publication guidelines of The Lancet.





Neric Acosta – Former Presidential Adviser for Environmental Protection, Government of the



Olusoji Adeyi – Director, Health, Nutrition & Population Global Practice, The World

Bank Group; Director, Affordable Medicines Facility for Malaria, Global Fund to Fight

AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (2009-2012)


Robert Arnold – Professor of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of



Kenneth Arrow – Nobel Laureate in Economics; Professor of Economics, Stanford



Siti Nurbaya Bakar – Minister of Environment and Forestry, Government of

Indonesia; Secretary General, Regional Representatives Council, Government of

Indonesia (2004-2013); Secretary General, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of

Indonesia (2001-2005)


Abdoulaye Bibi Baldé – Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development,

Republic of Senegal


Ralava Beboarimisa – Minister of the Environment, Ecology, Sea and Forestry,



Roberto Bertollini – Chief Scientist and WHO Representative to the EU World

Health Organization, Office at the European Union


Li Bingbing – Actress; singer; environmental protection advocate; UNEP Goodwill



Patrick Breysse – Director, National Center for Environmental Health/Agency for

Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and



Palaniappan Chidambaram – Union Minister of Finance, Government of India

(2004-2008, 2012-2014); Minister of Home Affairs, Government of India (2008-2012)


Thomas Chiles – DeLuca Chair of Biology and Vice Provost for Research, Boston



David Cooper – Deputy Executive Secretary, Convention on Biological Diversity


Maureen Cropper – Senior Fellow, Resources for the Future


Valentin Fuster – Professor of Internal Medicine and cardiology, Physician in Chief

and Director, Zena and Michael A. Wiener Cardiovascular Institute, Mount Sinai Medical

Center, New York, NY; General Director, Centro Nacional de Investigaciones

Cardiovasculares Carlos III (CNIC), Madrid, Spain; President, World Heart Federation



Michael Greenstone – Director, Energy Policy Institute at U. of Chicago; Milton

Friedman Professor in Economics at the University of Chicago


David Hanrahan – Senior Technical Advisor to the Global Alliance on Health and

Pollution (GAHP)


Sir Andy Haines – Professor, Departments of Social and Environmental Health

Research and Population Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine


David Hunter – Acting Dean, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health


Mukesh Khare – Professor of Environmental Engineering, Civil Engineering

Department, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi


Rubén Kraiem – Partner, Covington and Burling


Alan J. Krupnick – Senior Fellow and Co-Director, Resources for the Future Center

for Energy and Climate Economics


Bruce Lanphear – Clinician Scientist, Child and Family Research Institute, BC

Children’s Hospital; Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, Simon Fraser University


Bindu Lohani – Vice President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable

Development, Asian Development (ADB); Vice President for Finance and

Administration, Asian Development Bank (2007-2011)


Keith Martin – Executive Director, Consortium of Universities for Global Health;

Member of Parliament, Canada (1993-2011)


Karen Mathiasen – Senior Advisor, Office of the U.S. Executive Director, World Bank

Group; Director, Multilateral Development Banks, U.S. Dept. of Treasury


Maureen McTeer – Canadian Lawyer, Author, Women’s Rights and Health Advocate,

and Adjunct Professor of Health Law at the University of Ottawa


Christopher Murray – Professor of Global Health, University of Washington; Director,

Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation


Ramon Paje – 19th Secretary of the Philippine Department of Environment and

Natural Resources (DENR); former DENR Undersecretary for Field Operations; former

DENR Executive Director of the Minerals Development Council


Frederica Perera – Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, Director of the

Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health, Mailman School of Public Health,

Columbia University


Janez Potocnik – European Commissioner for the Environment (2010-2014);

European Commissioner for Science and Research (2004-2010); Minister for European

Affairs, Government of Slovenia (2002-2004)


Alexander Preker – Executive Scholar & Adjunct Associate Professor, Columbia

University, Mt. Sinai and NYU; President and CEO of the Health Investment & Financing

Corporation; former Head of Health Industry Group & Chief Economist for Health,

World Bank Group/IFC (1991-2013)


Jairam Ramesh – Member of the Indian Parliament; Minister of Rural Development,

Government of India (2011-2014); Minister of State, Ministry of Environment and

Forests, Government of India (2009-2011)


Johan Rockström – Professor of Environmental Science, Director of Stockholm

Resilience Centre, Stockholm University


Carlos Salinas – President, Mexico (1988-1994)


Aitkul Samakova – Member of Parliament, Kazakhstan; Minister of Environment,

Kazakhstan (2002-2006)


Leona Samson – Professor of Biology and Biological Engineering, Massachusetts

Institute of Technology (MIT); Director, MIT Center for Environmental Health Sciences



Karti Sandilya – Senior Advisor, Pure Earth; U.S. Resident Director, Asian

Development Bank (2002-2004); Joint Secretary, Ministry of Finance, India (1983-1986)


Onno van Schayck – Scientific Director of the Netherlands School of Primary Care

Research, Professor of preventative medicine, Maastricht University


Awa Marie-Coll Seck – Minister of Health, Republic of Senegal; Director,

Department of Policy, Strategy and Research and Department of Country and Regional

Support, UNAIDS (1996-2001)


Peter Sly – Professor of Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Senior Clinical

Research Fellow, the University of Queensland


Kirk Smith – Professor of Environmental Health, Director of the Global Health and

Environment Program, School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley


Erik Solheim – United Nations Environment Programme, Executive Director and

Under-Secretary General of the United Nations


Achim Steiner – Former Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme;

Director General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (2001-2006)


Richard Stewart – Professor of Law, Director of the Frank J. Guarini Center on

Environmental, Energy, and Land Use Law, New York University School of Law


William Suk – Director of the Center for Risk and Integrated Sciences, Director of the

Superfund Research Program, Chief of the Hazardous Substances Research Branch,

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences


Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn – Princess of Thailand; President,

Professor, Chulabhorn Research Institute


Gautam N. Yadama – Dean and Professor, Boston College School of Social Work


Kandeh Yumkella – Former Director-General of the United Nations Industrial

Development Organization (UNIDO), Founder – Sustainable Energy for All


Ma Zhong – Professor and Dean, School of Environment and Natural Resources,

Renmin University of China; Senior Advisor, Ministry of Environmental Protection;

Council Member, China Council for International Cooperation of Environment and




Get from Elena



Kaushik Basu – World Bank Chief Economist

Stephan Boese-O’Reilly – Researcher

Clea Bowdery – Vance Center for Justice

Naomi Chakwin – Asian Development Bank

Rob DeLink – OECD

Olivier Deschenes – Environmental Economist, UCSB

Gabi Eigenmann – Ministry of Environment, Switzerland

Andrew Haines

Jill Hana – European Commission

Alistair Hunt (env. econ. U. Bath)-

Homi Kharas – Brookings Institute

Marisa Gil Lapetra –

Fernando Lugris – Minister of the Environment, Uruguay

Urvashi Nairan – World Bank

Ernesto Sanchez-Triana – World Bank Economist

Ralph Osterwoldt – Canadian Embassy

Marit Viktoria Pettersen – Norway MoFA

Annette Prüss-Üstün – World Health Organization

Marthe Delphine Rahelimalala – Madagascar Minstry of Environment

Pavit Ramachandran – Asian Development Bank

Sezaneh Seymour – Department of State

Ibrahima Sow – Global Environment Facility

Mathy Stanislaus – US EPA

Loic Viatte – Ministry of Environment, Sweden

Mona Mejsen Westergaard – Ministry of Environment, Denmark

Birgit Wolz – Ministry of Environment, Germany

Maria Neira – World Health Organization

Michael Kremer – Harvard University

Frank George (Technical Officer, Env. Health and Econ. WHO)

Julius Fobil – School of Public Health, University of Ghana

Shu Tao – College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Peking University

Niladri Basu – McGill University, Canada





The Lancet Report


(Upload when doc are available in March)

  • Executive Summary
  • Infographic Summary
  • Key Messages
  • Recommendations
  • Solutions
  • Full Report
  • Annexes


Global Pollution Map


  • About


We are working on a landmark report on the impact of pollution around the globe. Authored by 50 expert researchers and policymakers, the Global Commission on Pollution + Health will publish a report in The Lancet in the spring of 2017. The report will document the combined disease burden from air, water and soil pollution, calculate the economic impact, and examine the disproportionate harm pollution causes children and pregnant women. The report will also present a range of proven solutions to address the global pollution crisis, and call for increased investment in pollution control from national governments, foundations and the international community.

The research team has concluded from looking at all forms of pollution, that it is the leading cause of death in the world, stealing almost 10 million lives a year, 92% of those deaths occurring in low and middle-income countries.

And this is still an underestimation because accurate data is missing from many severely effected countries.

  • Crowd-sourced Pollution Reporting

That is where you and the map come in. This is an early prototype and we will be adding more data layers as they become available. Your reporting, telling your story, can help fill in those holes and bring an understanding of the human experience that gets lost in the numbers. Go to the Tell Your Pollution Story page, fill it out, upload your pictures then click the social media share button and invite your friends to do the same.

These entries will be shared with national and world leaders during report briefing events in New York, London, Delhi, Brussels, Mexico City and more to be announced.

Let’s make the invisible, hidden nature of water, soil, chemical and air pollution in poor communities, visible, so together #wecanfightpollution.

  • National Geographic Your Shot – Tell Your Pollution Story

To support the work of the Global Commission on Pollution, Health and Development to be published in the Lancet in April 2017, we are calling all photographers to #TellYourPollutionStory. Show us how your community is affected by pollution on a daily basis. The report will bring to light the new evidence that pollution, in all its forms—air, water, and soil—is the leading cause of death and disability in the world, taking almost nine million lives every year. The majority of those deaths and disability—94 percent— occur in low- and middle-income countries. These are startling numbers that are hard to comprehend. But your images and captions will help transform this data into the many visible facets of human life and health being harmed by pollution.

Many forms of pollution are invisible, creating a challenge for photographers. Sometimes pollution is felt, not seen. Often it is not felt at all, but is still a serious, silent threat. We want to know what it looks like through your eyes and how pollution is impacting your community. Perhaps you’ve seen an environmental cleanup project, or have benefitted from a pollution control project. Show us what that is like.

The Your Shot editors will select their favorite hashtag entries to coincide with the publication of the commission’s report on April 17, 2017, right before Earth Day. However, the Commission on Pollution, Health and Development invites you to submit more detail about the pollution concerns in your community, and additional images, by visiting globalpollutionmap.org and clicking on “Tell Your Pollution Story.”

The Commission wants to know, through your words and images, how pollution has changed life in your community over the past 30 years. Have globalization and economic and industrial growth brought increased pollution and changed local life? Ask your community elders or grandparents for their perspective and old photos. What did your area look like before these changes? How has pollution altered the health issues you, your family, and your community are dealing with? What are your concerns for the future? Has any pollution been controlled or cleaned up in your neighborhood or village? What impact did that have? What remains to be cleaned up? What do you want world leaders to know about your environmental concerns? Entries will be displayed via a map and shared with leaders around the globe.


Solutions Resources


  • Posted when report is complete in March

Briefing Events

Posted when determined in March

  • New York
  • London
  • Delhi
  • Mexico City

Partnering to Solve Pollution Problems