In 2017, The Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health found that pollution is the largest environmental cause of disease and death in the world, responsible for an estimated 9 million premature deaths. Huge multinational companies and regulatory agencies have been missing the mark, making grievous mistakes, or in many cases intentionally polluting for their own profit. And, not surprisingly, it’s making millions of people sick. Almost every town hall meeting that I’ve attended turns into a meeting about the health crisis in a community, and that’s not okay. Many communities only find out about pollution in their area because huge clusters of people become sick. So it’s not surprising to me that 18 months into this global pandemic, we are seeing how polluted communities are also dealing with more severe cases of COVID-19. New research published on August 13 found strong evidence that wildfire smoke created more severe cases of COVID-19.