According to a recent report by AirVisual, 22 out of the 30 most polluted cities in the world are in India. The reports that were previously generated around a year ago featured major chunk cities in China as the most polluted in the world. These cities, which still polluted have shown a considerable improvement when compared to the Indian cities that now amount as the most polluted.
Gurugram – The financial and technological hub of the country was slated as the most polluted city in the world as reported by Greenpeace. Averaging and Air Quality Index of 135.8 in 2018, Gurugram’s air quality has been constantly ranging in the Unhealthy Levels. The AQI of the city was found to be three times higher than the one set as healthy by the US Environmental Protection Agency.
A couple of months in 2018, Gurugram’s AQI – Which is directly attributed to PM 2.5 was above 200 micrograms. This is regarded as extremely unhealthy by EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and is way beyond WHO’s safe level of PM 2.5 which is set as 10 since late 2017.
Air Pollution has been a cause of premature deaths around the world and the toll is only supposed to go higher in the coming years. According to reports, Air Pollution will cause 7 Million premature death next year. Yen Sano – Executive director of Greenpeace South Asia stated that in addition to human lives the raising Air Pollution worldwide would result in an estimated global cost of 225 Billion dollars. One needs to understand that Air Pollution is not only causing a major economic impact but also prove to sever for people of all classes.
South Asia has been severely hit by Air Pollution as almost 17 cities in the top 20 belong to the subcontinent. Most of these cities are cited in the countries of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. One of the major reasons for this sudden increase can be attributed to climate change which has amplified forest fires and increasing the chances of unexpected climatic changes. However, Air Pollution is mostly due to Global Warming which is on the increase due to the burning of fossil fuels.
According to this latest list, 99% of the Middle East and African cities exceeded the WHO’s guidelines of the safe level of PM 2.5 value. Reports have also stated that since most of the cities included in this list are around areas which don’t have a perfectly structured and calibrated air quality monitoring system in place these values might even be higher than what has been calculated.
Also, Read – Assam Air Pollution is at an all-time high
The fact that most polluted cities in the world are in India is definitely alarming. According to experts the brightest spot of this latest study was the omission of Chinese cities – Which are usually the most polluted, slowly descending down on the list. The foremost reason for this is a growing awareness both in the citizens and government of China. When it comes to India – Both the citizens and the government are as oblivious about the growing disaster as one can be. This needs to change. The need to have better monitoring devices needs to be fixed as soon as possible. The reason why cities like Kanpur, Faridabad, Gaya, Varanasi, Patna, Delhi, Lucknow and Gurugram featured in the Top 10 must be brought to the forefront and be dealt with.