Outdoor air pollution accounts for an estimated 4.2 million deaths worldwide, the majority of which are caused by exposure to fine particulate matter (or PM2.5) air pollution. Most of these deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Air pollution is increasingly understood as a global issue, requiring an understanding of pollution sources, transport, and transformation from local to regional to global scales (IPCC, 2013).

Exposure to air pollution has long been associated with mortality and shortened life expectancy and has been acknowledged as one of the main risk factors that affect people’s health worldwide. Among all air pollutants, fine particulate matter (PM2.5) has been identified as a substantial public health concern.

Urban India, particularly metros, is a major hotspot of air pollution with a PM2.5 concentration level ranging above the permissible limits defined by the WHO for most of the year. Unsurprisingly, special efforts have been made by the Government of India in recent years to improve air quality.

This study reviews and compares five databases (three global and two regional) that provide emission estimates for air pollutants in India. These databases include EDGARv5, ECLIPSEv6b, REASv3.2, SMoGv1 and TERI (2016).

New WHO Global Air Quality Guidelines (AQGs) provide clear evidence of the damage air pollution inflicts on human health, at even lower concentrations than previously understood.

This report is the synthesis of the key findings and recommendations of the studies carried out under the World Bank’s Ethiopia AQM ASA program. The rest of the report is organized as follows.

This review of the epidemiological literature on fugitive dust indicates the likelihood of significant public health impacts from both short- and long-term exposure to both fine and coarse dust. These impacts are observed in populations that are both near to and distant from the original dust sources.

Global studies of the health impacts of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) have been based on particle mass, but there is evolving evidence indicating that adverse health effects can vary depending on the source and composition of PM2.5.

COVID-19 lockdowns brought rapid and “unprecedented” improvements in air quality in some parts of the world - but not enough to halt climate change caused by global warming said the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)'s Air Quality and Climate Bulletin