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WHO: only 16% of city populations breathe healthy air

People's Daily Online, May 14, 2016 Adjust font size:

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced the latest statistics on the atmospheric environments of major world cities on May 12. According to the report, many cities, especially in poorer countries and regions, are experiencing significantly worsened atmospheric pollution, often reaching the level of “catastrophic.”

WHO says on its official website that atmospheric pollution can lead to fatal respiratory diseases. WHO urges countries to take more effective measures to improve air quality.

After analyzing the PM2.5 and PM10 from 3,000 cities in 103 countries, WHO concluded that only 16 percent of city populations are breathing healthy air. In developed countries, 56 percent of cities air fell short of the standard; 98 percent of cities in developing countries failed to reach the standard.

Delhi, India has the worst atmospheric pollution, according to the report. Its PM2.5 exceeded 10 times the recommended standard. According to WHO, more than 3 million people have died due to the air in Delhi. Air pollution in Mumbai, Beijing and Cairo also exceeded 5 times the recommended standard.

In order to improve air quality worldwide, WHO recommends using more new energy resources like solar and wind energy to help ease the situation.