NEW DELHI – At least 47 million children under the age of five in India live in areas where the level of air pollution is greater than the recommended standards, according to a report released on Monday by environmental organization Greenpeace.
The report “Airpocalypse-II,” which was made by analyzing official data, investigates the situation surrounding 630 million Indians, some 53 percent of the country, from 330 municipalities where air quality data is available.
Activist Sunil Dahiya, the author of the report, told EFE that if they had data covering the entire country, this number would more than double, since most of the people about whom there is no information are from northern and central India.
Of the 630 million, 550 million live in areas exceeding the stipulated standard for PM10 – particulate matter measuring 10 micrometers or less in diameter – and 180 million live in areas where PM10 levels are more than twice the stipulated standard of 60 particles per cubic meter.
New Delhi is the most polluted city in India, with an average PM10 level of 290 particles per cubic meter in 2016, almost five times the concentration recommended by Indian authorities, according to the investigation.
Dahiya, who worked with Central Pollution Control Board data, lamented the lack of information regarding the whole country.
According to the World Health Organization, the concentration of 200 particles per cubic meter is considered very unhealthy, while from 300 onwards, the air becomes toxic.