The World Health Organisation (WHO) recently released its 2014 version of the Ambient Air Pollution (AAP) database revealed that thirteen of the dirtiest 20 cities were Indian. Delhi tops the list followed by Patna, Gwalior and Raipur in second, third and fourth spot respectively.
Delhi’s air has PM2.5 concentrations of 153 micrograms and PM10 concentrations of 286 micrograms–much more than the permissible limits. The higher limit of particulate matters in the air poses risk of respiratory diseases and other health problems.
Beijing, otherwise dubbed as “Greyjing” for its smog, was in 77th place with a PM2.5 reading of 56, little over one-third of Delhi’s pollution level.
The database contains results of outdoor air pollution monitoring from almost 1600 cities in 91 countries. The database contains results of outdoor air pollution monitoring from almost 1600 cities in 91 countries. The database covers the period from 2008 to 2013, with the majority of values for the years 2011 and 2012.
According to WHO report air pollution, which is the fifth largest killer in India, killed about seven million people globally in 2012, making it the world’s biggest environmental health risk. About 80 percent of those deaths came from heart attacks and strokes, although air pollution also increases lung cancer deaths.