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Eating food cooked on wood, coal may impair your lungs

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Food cooked on wood coal
Photo Credit- Daniel Krieger

New York, Sep 21: Love to eat food cooked on the barbecue? Beware, it is associated with increased risk of respiratory illness or death, researchers warned.

Compared to those who used electricity or gas, chronic and acute respiratory disease hospitalisations or deaths were 36 per cent higher among those who used wood or coal for cooking, researchers, from the University of Oxford, have found.

People who switched from solid fuels to clean-burning fuels reduced their risk to only 14 per cent higher than those who never cooked with wood or coal.

It is because solid fuels emit very high levels of pollutants especially very small particles, which penetrate deep into lungs, the researchers explained.

“The increased risk of major respiratory diseases posed by burning wood or coal can be significantly lowered by switching to a clean-burning fuel”, said Zhengming Chen, professor at the varsity’s Nuffield Department of Population Health.

“Our findings make a compelling case to speed up the global implementation of universal access to affordable clean energy, one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” Chen said.

Nearly three billion people around the world live in households that regularly burn wood, coal or other solid fuels to cook their food.

Typically, these households are found in the rural areas of low- and middle-income countries.

For the study, published in the journal American Thoracic Society, the team analysed the health records of 280,000 adults, aged 30 to 79 from 10 areas of China.

They were followed for nine years and 19,823 were either hospitalised or died following major respiratory diseases.

Of these events, 10,553 were due to asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and 7,324 were due to acute lower respiratory infections, most often pneumonia.

IANS

Health

UN must hold China accountable for unleashing Covid-19 plague onto world: Trump

Addressing the UN’s first virtual meeting of world leaders, Trump accused the Chinese government and the World Health Organization (WHO) of making a false declaration that there was no evidence of human to human transmission of Sars-Cov-2.

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Donald Trump

US president Donald Trump on Tuesday renewed his attack on China accusing it of spreading the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in the world. He urged the United Nations to hold it accountable for “unleashing this plague onto the world.”

Addressing the UN’s first virtual meeting of world leaders, Trump accused the Chinese government and the World Health Organization (WHO) of making a false declaration that there was no evidence of human to human transmission of Sars-Cov-2, the virus that causes the deadly infection. He also said that the WHO is virtually controlled by China.

“As we pursue a bright future, we must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world – China,” Trump said at the 75th UNGA debate.

The US president said that in the earliest days of the outbreak, China locked down travel domestically while it continued to allow flights to leave the country and infect the rest of the world.

“China condemned my travel ban on their country, even as they cancelled domestic flights and locked citizens in their homes,” he added.

Trump again used the term “China virus” that has so far infected 31,365,633 people across the world and claimed over 965,000 lives so far.

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Punjab CM Amarinder Singh orders strict enforcement of Covid-19 protocols

Nobody knows how long the crisis will continue or what the disease’s side effects really are, pointed out the Chief Minister, directing the departments concerned to step up their efforts to spread public awareness about the problem.

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Amarinder Singh

Chandigarh, Sep 22 : Even as he expressed satisfaction at increased testing in rural areas with many panchayats passing resolutions in support of the government efforts, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday ordered strict enforcement of Covid safety protocols and strengthening of public awareness campaigns across the state.

The Chief Minister expressed concern over the continuing violation by the people of the rules and protocols on safety.

The state government had no option but to open up but people have to realise their responsibility, he said during a Covid review meet, held through video conference, stressing the need to bring down the case fatality rate (CFR), which remains higher than the national average in Punjab.

Taking serious note of people continuing to not wear masks and not giving up spitting on the roads despite the critical situation in the state, Amarinder Singh directed DGP Dinkar Gupta to ensure punishment for those found violating the rules.

Nobody knows how long the crisis will continue or what the disease’s side effects really are, pointed out the Chief Minister, directing the departments concerned to step up their efforts to spread public awareness about the problem.

Earlier, the DGP said that 5,300 (40 per cent) of the state’s panchayats had passed formal resolutions backing Covid testing, as a result of which the initial resistance showed by public due to widespread disinformation campaigns had eased off.

Giving details of the number of police personnel impacted by the disease, Gupta said of the 86 cops who had died due to the infection, 18 had been reported in September, with eight currently on ventilators.

A total of 1,233 cops had tested Covid positive so far, he added.

The DGP said the Police Department was appointing a nodal officer to expedite disbursement of Rs 50 lakh compensation, as announced earlier by the Chief Minister, to the families of police personnel who had lost their lives in the fight against Covid.

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Cities

Stubble Burning: 332 villages identified as red zones in Haryana

Additional chief secretary (ACS), agriculture, Sanjeev Kaushal said the Haryana government has also decided to provide financial assistance to 11,311 individual farmers who have applied for agricultural implements under the crop residue management scheme.

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stubble burning

In anticipation of stubble burning incidents across the state, the Haryana agriculture department has identified red, yellow/orange and green zones in every district on the basis of incidences of crop residue burning last year. An official spokesperson said 332 villages fall under the red zone and 675 in yellow zone.

Additional chief secretary (ACS), agriculture, Sanjeev Kaushal said the Haryana government has also decided to provide financial assistance to 11,311 individual farmers who have applied for agricultural implements under the crop residue management scheme ‘Promotion of Agricultural Mechanization for In-Situ Management of Crop’, in the current growing season. The total assistance of about ₹155 crore at the rate of 50 % will be given.

The department will also provide 454 balers, 5,820 super seeders, 5,418 zero till seed drills, 2,918 choppers/mulchers, 260 happy seeders, 389 straw management systems, 64 rotary slashers/shrub masters, 454 reversible mould ploughs and 288 reapers to the beneficiaries.

Online applications for agricultural implements were invited from individual farmers and societies till August 21. As many as 11,311 farmers applied for 16,647 implements, against a target of 2,741, in the individual category, he said.

The state government has also decided to give preference to small and marginal farmers in hiring of machinery from Custom Hiring Centres (CHCs), and in providing equipment to individual beneficiaries under the scheme. A comprehensive plan has been approved for crop residue management to prevent stubble burning. It included fusion of in-situ and ex-situ crop residue management techniques, apart from monitoring activities through a dedicated control room, and registration of FIRs against violators.

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