Clean Air – A Distant Dream For Most Of The World

Key findings from the 2022 World Air Quality Report reveal the dangerous levels of air pollution measured in most of the 131 countries and regions under study.

118 countries exceeded the WHO annual PM2.5 guideline value of 5 µg/m3, says IQAir’s 5th Annual World Air Quality Report.

The top five most polluted countries in 2022 were Chad (89.7 µg/m3 – more than 17 times higher than the WHO annual guideline), Iraq, Pakistan, Bahrain and Bangladesh.

Only six countries met the PM2.5 guideline (annual average of 5 µg/m3 or less): Australia, Estonia, Finland, Grenada, Iceland, and New Zealand.

For this year’s report, data from more than 30,000 air quality monitoring stations across 7,323 locations in 131 countries, territories, and regions was analyzed by air quality scientists of IQAir, a Swiss air quality technology and monitoring company.

While Africa saw an increase from 13 countries represented in 2021 to 19 countries included in this year’s report, only 19 out of 54 countries in the continent have sufficient air quality data.

The most polluted city in the United States was Coffeyville, Kansas. The most polluted major U.S. city was Columbus, Ohio.

California was home to 10 of the 15 most polluted cities in the U.S.

Las Vegas was deemed the cleanest major city in the U.S.

Central and South Asia was home to eight of the world’s ten cities with the worst air pollution.

Out of 7323 cities where data is available, Kochi is ranked as the 342nd most polluted city as per the IQAir report.

The Indian capital city of Delhi is the fourth worst polluted in the world.

Air pollution continues to be the world’s largest environmental health threat. Worldwide, poor air quality accounts for 93 billion days lived with illness and more than six million deaths each year.

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