India Battle with Air Pollution: New Delhi Tops List as Most Polluted Capital

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In the 6th Annual World Air Quality Report, New Delhi emerges as the most polluted capital city worldwide, with India ranking as the third most polluted country in 2023, trailing Bangladesh and Pakistan. Despite efforts to combat air pollution, India continues to grapple with severe PM2.5 concentrations, exceeding WHO guidelines by over 10 times. The report identifies Begusarai in India as the most polluted metropolitan area globally in 2023, underscoring the urgent need for environmental action.

India’s air quality crisis worsened in 2023, with PM2.5 levels averaging 54.4 μg/m3, posing significant health risks to its 1.36 billion residents. The National Capital Region witnessed a troubling surge in PM2.5 levels, reaching a monthly average of 255 μg/m3 in November. Despite these alarming statistics, air quality monitoring remains insufficient, particularly in Africa, where a third of the population lacks access to such data.

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