How’s the air quality in African cities? Plus, cities in the world with the worst air quality

The air quality tells you whether the air in your city is clean or contaminated, and the health implications.

The Air Quality Index (AQI) is concerned with the health consequences of breathing dirty air within a few hours or days.

AQI is a daily air quality indicator. The Environment Protection Agency calculates the AQI based on five crucial air pollutants regulated by the Clean Air Act: ground-level ozone, particle pollution (also called particulate matter), carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide.

On the IQ Air website, you will be provided with the everyday assessment of the air quality in your locality. The ratings are based on a scale from 1-50 for good air quality, 51-100 for moderate air quality, 101-150 for air quality that is unhealthy for some groups, 151-200 for unhealthy air quality, 201-300 for very unhealthy air quality, and 301 for hazardous air quality.

Cities with the worst air quality

Currently, New York City has the worst air quality as a result of soot from Canadian wildfires. Right now, a thick brown fog hangs over the city and its air quality is rated at 222, which is very unhealthy.

New York City has the worst air quality in the world [Twitter/karenallen]

The next city with the worst air quality is Dhaka, Bangladesh (160), then Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel (155), followed by Lahore, Pakistan (155) and then Hanoi, Pakistan (153).

Only 19 countries out of 54 countries have sufficient air quality data. We analyzed the air quality in Nigeria in three cities of Nigeria – Abuja, Lagos, and Port Harcourt using IQ Air, and the findings indicate moderate air quality.

However, the air quality in other African cities is worse. Here is the ranking:

Accra, Ghana

Accra has an air quality of 111, that’s unhealthy by all standards.

Algiers, Algeria

Algiers has an air quality of 80.

Kampala, Uganda

Kampala has an air quality of 79.

Johannesburg, South Africa

Johannesburg has an air quality of 60 which is fair.

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