The harmful use of alcohol results in 3.3 million deaths each year.
On average, every person in the world aged 15 years or older drinks 6.2 liters of pure alcohol per year. However, less than half of the world's population (38.3%) drinks alcohol; this means that those who do drink consume on average 17 liters of pure alcohol annually.
Other psychoactive substances
It is estimated that 275 million people have used an illicit drug — such as cannabis, amphetamines, opioids, and cocaine — at least once in 2016, which translates into an annual prevalence of illicit drug use of roughly 5.6% of those age 15-64. Cannabis is the most used, with 183 million users.
An estimated 31 million persons have drug use disorders, meaning that their drug use is harmful to the point where they may need treatment.
An estimated 12 million people inject drugs. Injection drug use has been reported in 148 countries, of which 120 report HIV infection among the population of users.
See references for more information.
World Health Organization. Management of substance abuse. Facts and figures. Internet. Available at http://www.who.int/substance_abuse/en/. Accessed on June 19, 2018.
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. World Drug Report 2018. Available at https://www.unodc.org/wdr2018/. Accessed on September 10, 2019.