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What is the Health Impact of Air Pollution in Indonesia

Indonesia in Top 8 Countries with Worst Air Quality

Cities and rural areas are affected by air pollution

Indonesian Society of Respirology stated that air pollution has proven implied human health including respiratory or pulmonary system, cardiovascular system, cerebrovascular system, cancer risk, and woman and children’s health

Extract | Outdoor air pollution is a mix of chemicals, particulate matter, and biological materials that react with each other to form tiny hazardous particles. It contributes to breathing problems, chronic diseases, increased hospitalization, and premature mortality. In Indonesia, this is the cause 50% of morbidity nationwide. How is air pollution affecting Indonesia? More than 80% of the Indonesian population of more than 260 million inhabitants, is exposed to annual average concentrations of pollution, well above the WHO guideline. The country has the fifth-highest loss of years of life in the world due to particulate matter pollution.

Globally, air pollution kills an estimated 7 million people annually in Indonesia according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Jakarta ranks ninth among the most polluted cities in the world and first as the most polluted city in Southeast Asia.

Current air pollution problems are greatest in Indonesia as it caused 50% of morbidity across the country. Diseases stemming from vehicular emissions and air pollution include acute respiratory infection, bronchial asthma, bronchitis, and eye, skin irritations, lung cancer, and cardiovascular diseases.

What are the health consequences of air pollution on populations?

Exposure to high levels of air pollution can cause a variety of adverse health outcomes. It increases the risk of respiratory infections, heart disease, and lung cancer. Both short and long-term exposure to air pollutants has been associated with health impacts. More severe impacts affect people who are already ill. Children, the elderly, and poor people are more susceptible. The most health-harmful pollutants – closely associated with excessive premature mortality- are fine PM2.5 particles that penetrate deep into lung passageways.

Effect on pregnancy and child development

Air pollution affects pregnant women, fetuses and children. Exposure to ambient air pollution is associated with adverse birth outcomes, such as low birth weight, premature births, fetal death and low gestational births, and disorders neuro-developmental. In children, exposure to air pollution is associated with the risk of acute respiratory infections, decreased lung function, cancer risk, mental and motor development disorders and cognitive impairment in children and adolescents.

What are some of the major sources or causes of ambient air pollution?

Major sources of ambient air pollution include inefficient modes of transport (polluting fuels and vehicles), inefficient combustion of household fuels for cooking, lighting, and heating, coal-fired power plants, agriculture, and waste burning as mostly everywhere here, where Fair Future Foundation is working! (Why? Because there is no form of organised waste management. No pick-ups, no sorting … Everything is on fire and yes, it’s a drama!)

In Indonesia plastic combustion is responsible for the majority of asthma cases in children. The culprits are “phthalates”, those chemicals which give plastic its prized qualities (flexibility), and which are serious endocrine disruptors, associated with a plethora of health problems.

  • Burning plastics releases toxic gases such as dioxins, furans, mercury, and polychlorinated biphenyls into the atmosphere, and poses a threat to vegetation, as well as to the health of humans and animals;
  • When plastic is burned, it releases dangerous chemicals such as hydrochloric acid, sulfur dioxide, dioxins, furans and heavy metals, as well as particulates. These emissions are known to cause respiratory ailments and stress human immune systems, and they’re potentially carcinogenic;
  • Dioxins are deposited on crops, fruits, vegetables, and in waterways where they end up in our food and therefore in our bodies. These dioxins are potentially fatal persistent organic pollutants that can cause cancer and disrupt the respiratory and thyroid systems.

What can citizens do to protect themselves?

Fighting air pollution is everybody’s responsibility. We all need to do more, a lot more. Swiftly and proactively to reduce air pollution. Concerted and coordinated efforts with the active involvement of all the sectors are imperative. This includes the Government (national, state, and local governments), cities, community at large, and individuals.

  • To national governments: reduce emissions and set national standards that meet WHO air quality guidelines. Invest in research and education around clean air and pollution – they are an essential tool.
  • To cities and local communities: Public policies across sectors must factor in public health from the beginning, followed up with sufficient data and tools to assess them.
  • To individuals: Continue to stand up for your right to healthy and sustainable environments. Hold your government accountable.

All of us – in government, business, and individual – we are all accountable. Think and rethink, the way you live and consume and make sustainable choices for yourself, your children and your children’s children.

What can Indonesia and all other countries do to reduce air pollution?

Interventions to reduce air pollution include developing sustainable transport in cities; implementing solid waste management; providing access to clean household fuels and cookstoves; developing a market for renewables energies and energy efficiency, and implementing industrial emissions reductions.

In Indonesia, the regulation and control of land management need to be stronger. The government needs to lay down guidelines stating how State Forest Land can be used. A limited amount of permits for the exploration of the peatlands and forested areas should be introduced.

What Fair Future recommends above all else!

Prevention is a major aspect that should be done to minimize the effect of air pollution on human health.

Some of the prevention activities involved establishing regulations to reduce air pollution emissions, including regulation of non-smoking areas, regulation of threshold limit values ​​for vehicle emissions, emissions monitoring, vehicle maintenance, the implementation of industrial emissions, the rapid mass transport project in some large cities and the increase in energy from renewable sources.

To protect human health from air pollution, further research is being done on health vulnerability. Collaboration between professional organizations, non-governmental organizations, and government organizations on media education, workshops, and symposia should be established to increase people’s awareness of air pollution.

Give for Fair Future programs

Donate to programs initiated by Fair Future and Kawan Baik Indonesia, and be on the ground with us. We are committed to ensuring that as many people as possible have access to a better and healthier life. We are focusing on creating solutions for sanitation and access to drinking water and clean water, sanitationaccess to energy sources, access to school and knowledge, access to medical care (basic and emergency care), especially for children, healthy food, women's rights, and minorities living in rural and ultra peripheral areas.

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Give for Water Connections Program

Fair Future works every day to improve the living conditions of rural communities in eastern Indonesia.

One of the Foundation's tasks is to ensure equitable access to water in quantity and quality, in order to prevent diseases such as cholera, diarrhea, dysentery, hepatitis A, typhoid, and poliomyelitis. With, for children and vulnerable people, a high mortality rate., and maintain lives and livelihoods. This is to reduce environmental risks to health, by managing sanitation safely and with dignity. Still, the foundation seeks to involve women and men in the management of water resources, in sanitation by the implementation of safe hygiene practices in order to maximize the benefits for their communities.

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Give for Basic medical care

Whether it is to fight against famine, diseases linked to the lack of clean water, the lack of sanitation system, the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, respiratory diseases linked to air pollution, tuberculosis, or any other form of recurrent illness, Fair Future does what it can to best help populations in need.

Help us to provide us with medicines, medical equipment, logistics, my indispensable faith also to get us where no one ever goes. Help us to heal, to give a better life, to help us to save lives!

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Give for 1st emergency relief

Fair Future teams intervene to provide care, including in situations of social and natural disasters, how and why we adapt our activities to each. We have developed emergency actions that have been implemented in the fields of health, access to drinking water, food, and medical care, and have coordinated a multitude of actions since their different medico-social Base Camps. Our teams of professionals fight every day against epidemics and serious illnesses, due to lack of water, food, hygiene, and care for children or pregnant women and vulnerable people.

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Give for Rumah Kambera

Fair Future and Kawan Baik Indonesia Foundation incorporate in all its choices and decisions taken in the context of its actions and field programs, the notions of risks for communities, what is good or bad for them, for people, children, and villages. And for years, we have for mission to develop, support, and create humanitarian programs and actions linked to education, training, and medical care. This is why Fair Future and Kawan Baik Indonesia have created Rumah Kambera, our Base Camp in the Eastern part of Indonesia.

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Give for Rebuild MbinuDita program

After building a new school, bigger, stronger, with materials resistant to storms, bad weather, earthquakes, Fair Future and Kawan Baik, as part of the program, we named “Rebuild MbinuDita “, continue to provide basic things for the lives of thousands of people there.

The program “Rebuild MbinuDita” is to give access to clean water to all the inhabitants of the community, but also to medical care, to healthy food through the creation of organic gardens. These activities have no other objectives than to increase the quality of their life, to provide better health to people (especially children, vulnerable people, pregnant women), access to health and medical care, and for people to be able to increase their income.

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Give for The Truck of Life Program

In the most inaccessible territories, live thousands of people who do not have access to the most basic needs in order to ensure them a healthier life, or basic medical care, access to drinking water so as not to be ill, or a source of light for reading or studying for children.

The Truck of Life program allows us to provide medical care and take children or even a doctor or dentist to the nearest town. Truck Of Life allows us to bring equipment, food, and drinking water to wherever no one goes while ensuring the safety of our volunteers and specialized collaborators.

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Sometimes, it is not possible to make a donation via modern solutions, by what is called "e-banking".

From then on, you can participate in one of our projects or programs by making a bank transfer, via one of our two bank accounts in Switzerland.

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Antimicrobial resistances. What happens when drugs stop working?

Bacteria, viruses, parasites, and other microbes are constantly changing to ensure their survival, we have seen this with variants of influenza, COVID-10, etc. Some have adapted so well to medical treatment that the drugs commonly used for preventing or killing them are no longer effective. These microbes cause drug-resistant infections. Their ability to survive the drugs used against them is called antimicrobial resistance (AMR). In the case of bacterial pathogens, for which antibiotics are the most common and important drugs available for treatment, this is called antibiotic resistance (ABR). We mustn’t wait until it’s too late to tackle this major health challenge.

Fair Future and Kawan Baik change the nature of water

Clean water is life, health, food, leisure, energy… Water covers more than 70% of the Earth’s surface. It is in water that life on Earth began, so it is not surprising that all living things on our blue planet need water. Water is indeed many things: it is a vital need, a home, a local and global resource, a transport corridor, a climate regulator. And, over the past two centuries, it has become the end of the journey for many pollutants released into nature and a newly discovered mine rich in minerals to exploit. To continue enjoying the benefits of clean water and healthy oceans and rivers, we must fundamentally change the way we use and treat water.

There will always be people who live too far away, we are here to help them!

There are no toilets here, everyone practices open defecation. Furthermore, no one has direct access to water of any kind, and no access to a source of clean, drinkable water. Fair Future and Kawan Baik Foundations are changing that with the #waterconnections program, but there will always be people who live even further than far. We meet those people, all those families that we don’t forget. Thanks to all of you and our teams who are there, on the ground at the time of writing this line, they will also have access to one of our solutions, a borehole, a reservoir connected to the network…

Water is when we don’t have it that we realise how important it is!

Water we do not realize how important it is when we have access to it like that, by opening a simple tap and sometimes forgetting to close it. Water is when we don’t have it that we realize how important it is, how vital it is for our everyday life. So for a moment, let’s try to imagine what our life could be like without water. And if we have access to it, that this water is not consumable! This is what the families experience here, the children of all these villages in which Fair Future works almost 24 hours a day. The health of people, the prevention of diseases, the reduction of infant mortality, offering a better quality of life, food every day, a shower every day and for everyone are just a few aspects that oblige us to work and develop. innovative and sustainable solutions, relating to access to water in quantity and quality for families in the poorest and rural regions.

Magic works, construction continues, people are happy, there is water!

Having clean water close to home is a real challenge that Fair Future and Kawan Baik have taken on, so that the more than 2,200 villagers of Mbinudita can have clean water in their homes for the first time in their lives. This is so that everyone’s life is healthier, happier on all fronts, clearly more harmonious. Even if it is very hard physically, sometimes morally because we are isolated from everything and everyone, there is not a day during which we are not happy to be able to work within the framework of this immense project, one of the largest ever conducted by the Swiss foundation and its Indonesian twin sister, Kawan Baik Indonesia foundation.

Without or with very little water and food, it is very difficult to go to school!

Go to school, learn, concentrate, walk… All this with little water and food! This is the challenge faced by thousands of kids, their teachers and families. Not having enough water when you are a child, sometimes having to walk several kilometres to get to school. Not having enough to eat, not being able to wash. The difficulties of the teachers, their testimonies are revealing of the food, economic and access to water crisis which the children and their families have to face every day of their lives. Fair Future and Kawan Baik try to respond in the best possible way to these vital problems. Avoid malnutrition, improve health, provide access to a source of clean water so that children can go to school and learn in the best possible conditions.

Lifestyle habits: “-Because we’ve been doing it for a long time”

Pollution of streams and natural springs and everywhere. It is rare to find still pure sources whose water is not dangerous for health. Fair Future, within the framework of its prevention programs and access to better health, meets people from the most rural and poor regions of this immense country, offers affordable, simple and understandable solutions for all. At the same time, we are building clean water networks, we are drilling deep wells to provide access to quality water, in quantity, to families, children and vulnerable people.

The Water Crisis in Indonesia – Focus in Napu, Wunga, Sumba Timur

Drinking contaminated water can lead to serious health problems. Cholera, diarrhoea, dysentery, hepatitis A, typhoid, scabies, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, trachoma, typhoid and paratyphoid fevers, hepatitis, malnutrition and poliomyelitis, significant metabolic fatigue causing disorders of all vital systems, to death.
In the long term, consumption of water loaded with heavy metals, pesticides, nitrates and other chemical components such as arsenic are likely to cause serious congenital malformations in newborns: Limb deformation, hydro-encephalitis and other physical or mental disabilities.

Water Connections, the ongoing project on the MbinuDita Site

Where are we with MbinuDita’s Water Connections project? What are the funds that we have already collected, those that we have already invested in this vital project like never before for more than 2000 people without access to clean water? We present to you via a small infographic what we have already done, what remains to be done and the schedule for the next steps.

For the #WaterConnections Program, we have raised 42% of the budget!

We want to thank all those who help us in this project and are proud to announce that we received in donations, approximately 42% of the total budget. We encourage you all to do even more to carry out this vital project for more than 200 families, more than 2000 people, women, and children who do not have access to clean water. Without water in quantity and quality, living conditions cannot improve and people become sick and die. Without water, there is no green, no blue, no life. Without water, there are no plants, no trees, no fruits, no vegetables, no food.

Common diseases we work on

Tuberculosis in Indonesia: A social disease affects the poorest communities, those living in difficult conditions. There are hundreds of thousands of new cases in Indonesia, such as HIV, which is not often mentioned here!

Dengue virus infection: DENV is a real major cause of acute febrile illness here. In the most affected regions, mortality is very high & affects the most vulnerable. Especially for those who do not have access to medical care.

Malaria and the vulnerable: Every year, malaria kills thousands of people in Indonesia, in all regions, even the richest. 70% of all deaths are children under five, and affect people and families who cannot access medical care.

Antimicrobial resistances. In here, this is a real health emergency, almost all drugs are available over the counter! This scourge turns simple wounds and easily treatable diseases into causes of death.

Air pollution and health: Plastic that burns, everywhere! Air pollution is responsible for almost 50% of mortality here. Dioxins, furans, mercury, and polychlorinated biphenyls are highly toxic!

Malnutrition and famine: Malnutrition causes serious illnesses where we are! The phenomenon, creating a vicious cycle of starvation & disease. This is a major problem in which we deal with!

Medical care for children: Far too many children still die from easily preventable problems, especially in their first few days/weeks of life, as well as from diarrhea and pneumonia. Access to clean water and good sanitation solutions is one of the future goals to help them get better.

And about the Dengue fever?

Quick facts about Malaria

Click to open it

FFF Base Camp NTT, East Sumba

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