Environmental Health

Goal: Promote healthier environments to improve health.

More than 12 million people around the world die every year because they live or work in unhealthy environments.1 Healthy People 2030 focuses on reducing people’s exposure to harmful pollutants in air, water, soil, food, and materials in homes and workplaces. 

Environmental pollutants can cause health problems like respiratory diseases, heart disease, and some types of cancer.2 People with low incomes are more likely to live in polluted areas and have unsafe drinking water. And children and pregnant women are at higher risk of health problems related to pollution.3,4 

Tracking environmental pollutants is key to figuring out where and how people are exposed. Laws and policies to reduce different types of pollution can also help prevent many serious health problems and deaths.  

Objective Status

  • 2 Target met or exceeded
  • 3 Improving
  • 2 Little or no detectable change
  • 1 Getting worse
  • 2 Baseline only
  • 2 Developmental
  • 0 Research

Learn more about objective types



Prüss-Ustün, A., Wolf, J., Corvalán, C., Bos, R., & Neira, M. (2016). Preventing Disease Through Healthy Environments: A Global Assessment of the Burden of Disease from Environmental Risks. Retrieved from https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/204585/9789241565196_eng.pdf;jsessionid=09B50968F412E8B2DFD3E8FFDA7C200E?sequence=1 [PDF - 5 MB]


Brusseau, M.L., Ramirez-Andreotta, I.L., & Maximillain, J. (2019). Environmental Impacts on Human Health and Well-Being. Environmental and Pollution Science, 3, 477-499. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-814719-1.00026-4 


Landrigan, P.J., et al. (2017). Pollution: Think of the Children. The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health, 1(4), 249. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2352-4642(17)30133-5 


van den Hooven, E.H. et al. (2011). Air Pollution, Blood Pressure, and the Risk of Hypertensive Complications During Pregnancy. Hypertension, 57, 406-412. https://doi.org/10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.110.164087