facebook
twitter
search
search

Most cities fail air pollution guidelines, U.N. says

Most cities fail World Health Organization's air pollution guidelines.
By Ed Adamczyk Follow @adamczyk_ed Contact the Author   |   May 7, 2014 at 1:38 PM
| License Photo

UNITED NATIONS, May 7 (UPI) -- Many cities are “enveloped in dirty air” that is dangerous to breathe, a director of the United Nations’ World Health Organization said Wednesday.

A database covering 1,600 cities in 91 countries, released Wednesday, indicates only 12 percent of people living in those cities breathe air that complies with WHO air pollution guidelines. About half of the urban populations in the cities in question are exposed to air pollution at least 2.5 times higher than the guidelines suggest.

“Too many urban centers today are so enveloped in dirty air that their skylines are invisible,” said Dr. Flavia Bustreo, WHO Assistant Director-General for Family, Children and Women’s Health. She noted the connection between urban air pollution and increased levels of lung cancer and respiratory and heart disease.

She singled out Copenhagen, Denmark, and Bogota, Colombia, as cities that have improved their air quality by promoting “active transport” that encourages walking and cycling.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
Islamic State re-captures part of key Kurdish-held border town in Syria
Demand for mobile phones in North Korea means two per household
China's Great Wall is quickly disappearing, report says
Volcanic eruption alerts authorities in Japan
Girl Scouts chapter returns $100K donation that excluded transgender girls