New Delhi: Delhi and Kolkata were ranked first and second in the list of top 10 most polluted cities in the world, as per the global analysis of air quality.
The report, Air Quality, and Health in Cities, released by the US-based Health Effects Institute analyses pollution and global health effects for more than 7,000 cities around the world, focusing on two of the most harmful pollutants, fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2).
Mumbai, meanwhile, ranked as the world’s 14th most polluted city in the world.
Kano city in Nigeria occupied third spot while Peru’s Lima held the fourth position, Jakarta in Indonesia was at placed fifth and sixth.
Besides India, China’s three cities – Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu – featured in the list of world’s top 20 polluted cities.
The report summarises data on air pollution exposures and associated health impacts caused by these pollutants in 7,239 cities between 2010 to 2019. Of these, 1,503 are from South Asia.
In terms of death, Delhi and Kolkata reported 106 and 99 deaths per 1 lakh population in 2019 which could be attributed to PM2.5 pollution, according to the report.
Beijing in China had the highest PM2.5-attributable death rate of 124 in 2019. The report said the burden on health of PM2.5 has grown rapidly in cities in Southeast Asia.
“Of 7,239 cities analysed, all the 20 cities with the largest increase in PM2.5-attributable death rates from 2010 to 2019 are located in Southeast Asia, including 19 cities in Indonesia and one in Malaysia. All 20 cities reported an increase of more than 10 microgram per cubic metre in PM2.5 exposures in 2019 compared with 2010,” it said.
The report said geographic patterns of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution are strikingly different from the patterns seen for PM2.5 pollution.
PM2.5 pollution tends to be highest in cities in low and middle-income countries, whereas NO2 levels are high in large cities across countries of all income levels.