With pollution levels peaking across the globe, many countries are being forced to cut down on their carbon emissions and adopt more sustainable methods to continue their industries. Sadly, not many of these countries pay heed to the countless warnings of global warming and the possible flooding of major cities across the world if this continues. Here is a list of 6 of the most polluted countries in the world to this day.
China has struggled with pollution problems for decades, thanks mainly to its dependence on industrialization for economic growth. The city of Beijing in fact, recently issued a ‘red alert’ on pollution relating to particulate matters emitted from coal burning sites, steel plants and countless vehicles. The alert was so severe that schools, offices factories, construction sites and other public areas were completely shut down until the air cleared up just enough for someone to breathe it without dropping dead or passing out.
Despite urging other countries to cut down on their carbon emissions, the U.S.A has done little itself to cut down its own pollution levels. The surprising fact here is that more than the crowded cities, it the areas outside the metropolises that remain the most polluted. Some of these areas include Bakersfield, Fresno-Madera, San Jose, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Long Beach and Modesto-Merced in California, Logan in Utah-Idaho, Fairbanks in Alaska, Salt Lake City in Utah and Missoula in Montana. These areas experience high pollution levels consisting of particulate matter that drift over here from larger cities. Not to mention the pollution caused by the use of fertilizers and animal wastes in the agricultural lands located here.
India has been climbing the charts as one of the most polluted countries in the world and has now, reached the third rank in the list, with the capital city Delhi officially regarded as the most polluted city on earth. Most of the pollution in India is due to issues like biomass burning, fuel wood burning, fuel adulteration, agricultural crop burning traffic congestion and vehicle emission. Although the Air Prevention and Control Act of 1981 has helped make some improvements, there is still a lot to be done to reduce the pollution levels in the country.
Russia is one of the biggest contributors of greenhouse gas emissions, and has for some time now, been battling a lot of climatic issues arising out of the same. The lack of proper information about global warming and its hazardous effects has also made the country experience severe environmental degradation in recent years.
The country’s dependence on coal, oil, gas and fossil fuel for its industrial and nuclear operations has led to massive destruction of land and water resources. Soil erosion is rampant in many parts of the country while the accumulation of pollutants in major rivers and basins has led to the degradation of the same on a massive scale. Added to this are woes relating to deforestation, illegal poaching and airborne emissions, all of which threaten the quality of life in Russia considerably.
Japan has been experiencing environmental pollution since the Meiji period. The country is the largest consumer of fossil fuels in the world, with over 70% of the waste incinerators on earth located here. Japan is also the fifth biggest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world. Some of the factors responsible for this include unplanned urbanization and construction which has left the country with little breathing space for fresh air.
Germany has been facing pollution problems due to dust particles and toxic gases for quite some time now. The nitrogen dioxide levels in the country are measured to be twice the acceptable level, with many cities like Stuttgart, Munich and Freiburg showing little signs of trying to combat this rising issue in spite of having models in the form of sustainability initiatives adopted by neighboring countries like Germany.
Increasing pollution levels worldwide have led to many countries taking measures to reduce their emission rates. In spite of these measures and initiatives though, these countries tend to lead the list when it comes to being the most polluted places on earth.