A Look at Delhi: The Most Polluted City On Earth

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By Jessica Santini

Images of Chinese citizens strapped in gas masks and surrounded by a smoggy haze are what often dominate the media’s coverage of pollution and climate change. While Beijing undoubtedly struggles with devastating pollution, it is actually Delhi, India that takes the cake for “Most Polluted City on Earth.”


The World Health Organization found that “Delhi’s air contained several times more fine particulate pollution than Beijing’s. By most measurements, it’s the most polluted area in the world,” National Geographic reports.


Industries dump waste in local rivers and burn heaps of garbage into the air, polluting the land and water. The filthy water affects residents and livestock alike – specifically throughout impoverished neighborhoods.

For many Westerners, it’s difficult to imagine living in such a polluted area. We are privileged to have both local and national governments protecting the integrity of environment. Many developing countries like India are not so lucky. National Geographic’s Mathieu Paley has created a photo series depicting the sheer devastation throughout Delhi to shed light on their dire situation. Check out his photos here.


Luckily, India has options. They are an attractive nation for setting up Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) plants, with a project well underway on the Union Territory of Lakshadweep in India.


As Business-standard.com points out, “India is geographically well-placed to generate Ocean Thermal Energy, with around 2000 kms of coast length along the South Indian coast, where a temperature difference of above 20C is available throughout the year.”


With a by-product of producing clean fresh water, OTEC has the potential to drastically increase the quality of life for India’s 1.3 billion inhabitants.

Learn more about OTEC here.