International tourist arrivals, which reached 1.24 billion in 2016, are expected to increase worldwide by 3.3% per year, reaching 1.8 billion travelers by 2030.

While Europe remains the most popular destination, travel to Asia and Africa has increased significantly. This large and growing travel population affects travel-related health risk numbers, and therefore, well-being and health have become a part of travel concerns.

The health effects associated with exposure to air pollution is well documented, and early large-scale epidemiological studies, as well as more recent toxicity studies, have shown that exposure to air pollution, particularly particulate matter pollution, is significantly associated with adverse health effects. These documented associations include human mortality, ischemic heart disease, asthma exacerbations, systemic inflammation and oxidative stress and a range of other health impacts, particularly among vulnerable populations.

Dr. Ruzmyn Vilcassim is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He has previous work experience as a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Environmental Medicine, NYU School of Medicine, and in environmental pollution prevention and sustainable agriculture, at environmental non-profit organizations both in Sri Lanka and internationally. He is mainly interested in research on exposure assessment and associated health impacts of air pollution, focusing on practical environmental concerns that impact the day to day lives of residents in urban environments.

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