Jun 19, 2019 | Updated: 09:31 AM EDT

India Tops Poll in World’s Most Polluted

Mar 07, 2019 09:11 AM EST

Air Pollution
(Photo : https://pixabay.com/photos/industry-sunrise-air-pollution-1752876/)

The Greenpeace Report states that New Delhi in India took 22 of the top 30 spots in the survey conducted by the agency. While it comes as no surprise as New Delhi also made it to the list of the most number of residents living below the poverty line. It is once again named as the city with the dirtiest air in the world. Its neighboring city Gurgaon took the not-so-coveted spot in 2016.

Air pollution contributes to as much as seven million deaths each year. In fact, the United Nations considers it as the single yet the biggest environmental risk that brings about undeniable health concerns all over the world. Cities in Bangladesh, Pakistan and in China also made it to the list of the most air polluted in the world.

Greenpeace and IQAir AirVisual, the two groups responsible for compiling the World Air Quality Report of 2018 utilized air pollution data from thousands of private and public monitoring stations from various countries across the globe. They aimed at ranking about 30,000 cities in the world from the most air-polluted to the cleanest.

The country level, Bangladesh emerged in the top spot as the country with the most polluted air. This result is weighted by its population. It is closely followed by Pakistan and India. Mongolia and Afghanistan also ranked in the top 10.

"In addition to its adverse effects to human life, air pollution comes with an estimated cost of 225 billion dollars of losses from the workforce," said Yeb Sano, the executive director of Greenpeace in South East Asia. "Air pollution comes with enormous effects on our health and on our wallet," he further added.

The report looked for the amount of PM2.5 present in the air. These are the pollutants that bring about various respiratory conditions. Over 62% of the 30,000 cities included in the survey exceeded the amount of the PM2.5 contaminant in the air. In Chinese cities alone, the average concentrations of the pollutant fell by 12% from its record in 2017 to the 2018 report. Beijing is recorded as the 122nd most polluted city in the world.

The said increase in air pollution is due to the lack of proper public information dissemination, particularly in countries in Africa and South Africa. The report highlighted that in order to drive action to combat the problem on air pollution, the community must first be educated about what it is. 

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