There are billions of people that inhabit this planet, most who live in industrialized areas that are spewing out toxic fumes and chemicals that are not only harming the planet but also the people of that area.
Even with all our technological advances, we can not keep up with all the pollution, lack of proper waste management, and poor sanitation. Mix all that with the fact that a lot of cities around the world are way overpopulated, and it’s no surprise the filth some of the people are forced to live with.
We researched all the cities that are dealing with pollution, poor sanitation systems, poor garbage disposal practices, toxic water and more and compiled a list of the top 20 from all around the world.
Here are 20 of the dirtiest cities around the world.
20 Mexico City, Mexico (Has Poor Air Circulation Mixed With Excessive Smog)
There are over 26 million people inhabiting Mexico City.
For decades now, the city has been on the verge of a meltdown when it comes to cleanliness. With poor air circulation thanks to it being surrounded by mountains, the city and the people that live there are suffering from thick, dense smog due to excessive industrial emissions.
19 Ludhiana, India (Is The Worst Air Polluted City In India)
Ludhiana, India has over 3.5 million people living in it and is one of the largest industrialized cities in the country.
Known as the “Manchester of India,” Ludhiana is a haven for manufacturing businesses for industrial products, which is one of the biggest reasons why the city has the worst air pollution in all of India.
18 Antananarivo, Madagascar (Suffers From High Levels Of Air & Water Pollution)
Madagascar is known as a hotspot when it comes to tourists, which is why it’s a shocker that its capital would be on this list.
Sadly, Antananarivo is actually suffering from high levels of both air and water pollution, mainly due too little to no waste management system and industrialism.
17 Sukinda, India (50% Of Their Drinking Water Is Contaminated)
Sukinda in India is a huge mining capital that houses over 2.5 million people.
Due to mining, 50% of the city’s drinking water has become heavily contaminated. In fact, Brahmani, one of the city’s major rivers, contains dangerously high levels of hexavalent chromium, which can cause cancer and other diseases.
16 Dhaka, Bangladesh (Has Over 12 Million People & Only Half Have Access To Sewer & Septic Systems)
Dhaka, Bangladesh is known as one of the biggest and densest cities in the world, with over 12 million people inhabiting it.
Now, out of those 12 million people living in the city, only half of them have access to a sewer and septic system.
15 Port Au Prince, Haiti (Was Hit With An Earthquake That Brought The City Crashing Down)
Port Au Prince in Haiti was once one of the biggest hotspots for tourists to visit.
Sadly, in 2010, an earthquake hit the city and left it in ruins. Add that to overpopulation, industrialism, poor sanitation and the inadequate housing facilities for the one million people that inhabit it, and it's no wonder it made the list.
14 Ahvaz, Iran (Was Declared To Have The Highest Level Of Air Pollution In The World Back In 2011)
Back in 2011, the World Health Organization, aka WHO, did a study that found that Ahvas, Iran had the highest levels of air pollution in the WORLD!
With over 3 million people inhabiting it, illegal oil-mining operations, and no proper sewage systems, it comes to no surprise that it would make a list like this one.
13 Dzerzhinsk, Russia (Has Dangerous Levels Of Dumped Toxic Chemicals)
Dzerzhinsk, Russia only has around 300,000 residents.
Throughout the 20th century, this city was known to produce the Soviets' weaponry, which left it with dangerously high levels of dumped toxic chemicals.
Because of the high pollution, the city has a very low life expectancy rate with locals.
12 Linfen, China (Was Declared The Most Polluted City In The World Back In 2007)
Back in 2007, Linfen, China, was labeled the world’s most polluted city due to its severe coal-mining abuse.
In fact, the air in the city is so polluted that when residents wash their clothes and then try to hang them outside, the clothes turn black. Many of the 4 million residents are suffering from respiratory diseases such as lung cancer, pneumonia, bronchitis, and lead poising.
11 Baku, Azerbaijan (Has Contaminated Air & Water)
Baku, Azerbaijan, also known as the “Black City,” has some of the richest oil fields in the world.
Thanks to human greed, the city is now overrun with drills and refineries, which has contaminated the air with smoke and dust, and the waters are now full of petrochemical by-products.
10 Port Harcourt, Nigeria (Lacks Proper Waste Disposal Methods, Which Have Contaminated The Nigeria River)
Port Harcourt, Nigeria, which has over 1 million inhabitants living in the city, has major problems when it comes to waste disposal.
In fact, due to the inhabitants lacking the means to prevent oil spills and contamination, and because they are ill-equipped at methods to help with cleaning after disasters, the rivers of Nigeria are heavily contaminated.
9 New Delhi, India (Is Known As The Most Polluted City On Earth)
Industrialism has made New Delhi, India the most polluted city on Earth. But the garbage and sewage that runs through the Yamuna River are what killed the marine life that once inhabited it. In fact, the water is so loaded with water-borne diseases, that the city has high infant morbidity rates.
8 Maputo, Mozambique (Has Streets Lined With Garbage & Water Thick With Sewage)
The city of Maputo in Mozambique, which has over a million residents, doesn’t have proper sanitation processes, meaning they lack the means of getting rid of solid waste properly and don’t have proper sewage treatment facilities.
Because of this, the capital city of Maputo has piles of garbage lining the streets, and the river is thick with sewage.
7 Luanda, Angola (Has Water With High Levels Of Chlorine)
The city of Luanda in Angola has over two million residents.
Sadly, those residents are forced to drink that is of dangerous quality due to a lot of the population living on settlements that were built on hardened waste. Most of the water that is delivered to the settlements is loaded with high levels of chlorine.
6 Niamey, Niger (Is A Cesspool Of Waste & Pollution)
The capital city Niamey, with over 14 million inhabitants, is known as a cesspool of pollution and waste.
In fact, the World Health Organization did a study and found that the life expectancy for the residents living there due to poor sanitation and lack of drinkable water is 35 for males and 36 for females.
5 Lome, Togo (Lacks Proper Water & Waste Management)
The city of Lome, which has over 800 thousand inhabitants, has a serious problem when it comes to waste management and clean water.
In fact, a large percentage of the people that live there are living without clean water or sanitation and due to all the extensive flooding in the city, the issues have only magnified.
4 Pointe Noire, Congo (Suffers From Air Pollution & Water Contamination)
Pointe Norie has a population of over 700 thousand and is dealing with air pollution from vehicle emissions and water contamination from huge heapings of raw sewage being dumped into the city’s water supply. Most residents of the Congo either live in Pointe Noire, Brazzaville, or along the railroad track that connects the two.
3 Bamako, Mali (Suffers From Urban Pollution)
Due to rapid population growth and urban pollution, Bamako is riddled with a mix of health and sanitation challenges. In fact, due to all the droughts that the country suffers with, a lot of the people living in the rural areas have moved to the urban areas of the city, causing even more water and waste management issues.
2 Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso (Suffers With Air Pollution)
Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso has over two million people living in it, most who suffer from cancer and respiratory diseases due to the air pollution that has infected the city.
The World Health Organization has stated that the benzene levels in the air have tripled in the last few decades due to motorbike petrol and dust particles.
1 Moscow, Russia (Lacks Clean Running Water & High Levels Of Air Pollution)
In Moscow, the average cost for an apartment is $3,000, and most of them don’t even have clean running water.
Add that to the dangerously high levels of air pollution that put a daily strain on lung health, and it’s surprising that anyone would want to live there.