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Delhi Once Again World’s Most Polluted Capital, Another Indian City Surpasses Global Rankings

According to a recent study, Begusarai in Bihar is the world's most polluted metropolitan area, and Delhi is the capital city with the poorest air quality.

Edited By : simran rajpal | Updated: Mar 19, 2024 08:00 IST
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Delhi Regains Title Of World's Most Polluted Capital, Another Indian City Tops Global Ranking

A recent study found that Delhi was the capital city with the worst air quality and that Begusarai, in Bihar, was the most polluted metropolitan area in the world.

According to the World Air Quality Report 2023 by Swiss organization IQAir, India had the third worst air quality out of 134 countries in 2023 with an average annual PM2.5 concentration of 54.4 micrograms per cubic meter, behind Bangladesh (79.9 micrograms per cubic meter) and Pakistan (73.7 micrograms per cubic meter).

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India stands 3rd for pollution

India was the seventh most polluted nation in the world in 2022, with an average PM2.5 concentration of 53.3 micrograms per cubic meter. At an average of 118.9 micrograms per cubic meter of PM2.5, Begusarai distinguished itself as the world’s most polluted urban area. The rankings for 2022 did not even list the city.

The PM2.5 concentrations in Delhi increased from 89.1 micrograms/m³ in 2022 to 92.7 micrograms/m· in 2023.

Starting in 2018, experts consistently named the nation’s capital the world’s most polluted capital city four times in a row.

The report indicates that PM2.5 concentrations exceed the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommended annual guideline threshold of 5 micrograms per cubic meter for 1.36 billion individuals in India.

Furthermore, 96% of Indians, or 1.33 billion people, have PM2.5 levels that are more than seven times higher than the WHO’s yearly recommendation. Data at the city level confirm this trend; over 66% of the nation’s cities report yearly averages higher than 35 micrograms per cubic meter.

According to IQAir, the information used to compile this report was gathered from the more than 30,000 regulatory air quality monitoring stations and inexpensive air quality sensors that are spread throughout the world and are run by non-profit non-governmental organizations, commercial businesses, government agencies, research institutions, and citizen scientists.

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First published on: Mar 19, 2024 08:00 AM IST

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