In 2021, air pollution continued to reach unhealthy levels according to a report on World Air Quality which was prepared by ”IQAir” a swiss organization. Also, for the fourth year running, New Delhi remained to be the most polluted capital city in the world.


  • 35 Indian cities have been listed by the index under the worst air quality tag for 2021.
  • Bhiwadi, Rajasthan topped this list and was followed Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh.
  • From Uttar Pradesh, 14 other cities have also been included in this list and they are Ghaziabad, Lucknow, Meerut, Kanpur, Amroha, Agra, Varanasi, Jaunpur, Greater Noida, and Noida. These cities exceeded the PM2.5 limit of 0-5 µg/m³ by more than 10 to 15 times.
  • According to this report, not a single country from around the globe managed to meet the air quality standard of WHO in 2021.
  • In some regions smog rebounded after a dip due to Covid.
  • WHO’s September 2021 guidelines state that acceptable air quality with PM2.5 concentration levels should range between 0-5 g/m3. But, all the cities in this report have PM2.5 levels that are at least 10 times higher than the approved limits.

Basis of this report
This report has been based on the data of PM2.5 air quality taken from 6,475 cities in 117 regions, countries, and territories from across the globe. The data that was used to create this newly released report was generated from thousands of low-cost and regulatory air quality monitoring stations that are operated by non-profit organizations, governments, educational facilities, research institutions, citizen scientists, and companies from all over the world.

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