India’s air pollution is among the worst in the world, as ranked by the World Health Organization (WHO). Now, a Harvard Kennedy School professor is helping to bring the massive scale of the problem to public attention and test possible solutions.A new study published in this week’s Economic & Political Weekly shows that India’s high air pollution has pernicious health consequences for nearly every person in India. The study, led by Rohini Pande, Mohammed Kamal Professor of Public Policy, and collaborators from Harvard, University of Chicago, and Yale, shows that over half of India’s population – 660 million people – live in areas where fine particulate matter pollution is above India’s standards for what is considered safe. Furthermore, 99.5 percent live in areas with air pollution above the WHO’s stricter guidelines for healthy air.The researchers find that if India met its own air standards, those 660 million people would add about 3.2 years onto their lives. Put another way, lack of compliance with Indian air quality standards is costing the country’s citizens 2.1 billion life-years.
Jason Bohannon will look to lead the senior backcourt against an experienced Oakland squad.[/media-credit]In two exhibition games and last Sunday’s season opener, the Wisconsin basketball team has defeated its opponents by 36, 33 and 29 points.With the Summit League’s preseason favorite Oakland coming to the Kohl Center Wednesday night, the Grateful Red might be finally treated to a game that isn’t decided by halftime.Missing out on the NCAA Tournament last season by just two points in the Summit League Tournament final, the Golden Grizzlies return their second and third leading scorers from 2008, along with the NCAA’s fifth leading shot blocker in Keith Benson.“It is a team that has multiple big guys that can play,” UW associate head coach Greg Gard said. “They have four of them that will play on the front line and they are all pretty mobile. None of them are stiffs, they all move pretty well. They play off one another pretty well and they have all played together for a while.”Similar to Wisconsin, Oakland utilizes five upperclassmen as starters, putting out two seniors and three juniors at tipoff.In smaller Division I conferences, the teams with the most experience are usually the programs that finish the year on top — a formula Oakland took advantage of to qualify for the NCAA Tournament in 2005.“They are a team that is built for this year,” Gard said. “At that level you really try to win with juniors and seniors, as North Dakota State did a year ago. … They are very experienced, talented and obviously have a lot of things going for them.”Unlike fellow Summit League team Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, the Golden Grizzlies boast a lineup of decent size.Besides the six-foot-11 Benson, Oakland plays six-foot-nine Will Hudson in a front line that would rival most Big Ten frontcourts in size.Though UW junior forward Jon Leuer hit eight of his 10 shots going over the top against the smaller IPFW forwards, UW’s current leading scorer isn’t worried about his first competition with actual size.“I have been going up against seven-footers all summer,” Leuer said. “For the first few weeks of practice with Keaton [Nankivil], J.P. [Gavinski] and Jared and Ian. So there are not too many guys bigger than them.”“Whatever opportunity presents itself we will take advantage of,” UW senior guard Jason Bohannon added. “[Against IPFW] we had an opportunity to get the ball to Jon in the post… maybe it will be someone else this time. Whatever opportunity we get, we will take advantage of it.”Along with providing decent competition for a nonconference game, UW head coach Bo Ryan has more personal reasons for scheduling Oakland.Hudson — a Madison native — played for Middleton in high school and will have chance to play in front of friends and family.Seeing as Wisconsin has never played Oakland in its history, the local favor probably provided a decent reason to schedule the contest.“There is a hometown flavor there with Will Hudson and that is kind of one of the reasons we looked at Oakland,” Gard said. “Giving Will a chance to come back home and play in front of people that saw him in Middleton.”One potential obstacle the Badgers face off the court comes from the upcoming Maui Invitational Tournament.Though no player would ever admit to looking ahead, a date with Arizona in Hawaii must be looming in the back of the team’s mind.“We are definitely excited for Hawaii, it will be a great experience, but we don’t look past anybody,” Leuer said. “Anybody growing up playing basketball knows that if you look past a game that is how you have slip ups.”Gard offered another reason to focus on the Golden Grizzlies.“When you watch them on film, they have a lot of people that can put pressure on the perimeter, they have an eraser inside who was fifth in the nation in blocked shots last year. Their point guard led the nation in assists last year, so they got all the pieces,” Gard said.