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20 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World

In this article, we will look into the 20 cities with the cleanest air in the world. If you want to skip our detailed analysis, you can go directly to the 5 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World.

Global Air Quality Outlook

According to the 2023 Air Quality report, only 10 out of the 135 reporting countries met the World Health Organization's (WHO) PM 2.5 standard in 2023. Europe is home to some of the cities with the cleanest air in the world. In 2023, 135 cities in the region attained the WHO annual PM2.5 standard of 5 μg/m³. This includes every city in Iceland, making it one of the countries with the cleanest air in the world. In 2023, the region witnessed an overall decline in the PM2.5 concentration. The United Kingdom led the region with the highest number of cities meeting the air quality standards. 30 Cities in the UK achieved the air quality standard in 2023, followed by Finland with 27 cities, and Sweden with 14 cities.

In North America, Canadian wildfires led to an increased particulate matter concentration in the country. Alberta reported a 9 times higher PM2.5 concentration during May 2023. The rising trend continued till late spring and summer, with PM2.5 concentration three times higher compared to the 2022 levels. This led to Canada surpassing the US level of 9.1 μg/m³ for the first time in the report's history. On April 11, Reuters reported that Canada is at risk of another catastrophic wildlife season, as the spring and summer temperatures are forecasted to be higher than normal across the country, due to El Nino weather conditions. Harjit Sajjan, the Minister for Emergency Preparedness, in Canada, said:

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"The temperature trends are very concerning. With the heat and dryness across the country we can expect that the wildfire season will start sooner and end later and potentially be more explosive."

As Canada faces another wildfire season, the country might encounter further potential air quality deterioration due to a rise in smoke and pollution.

41% of Canadian cities reported particulate matter concentration higher than 10 μg/m³ in 2023. The total number of cities meeting the WHO air quality standard decreased from 514 to 454 in 2023. The US also experienced an increase in the PM2.5 levels, driven by the wildfires in the region. Cities including Milwaukee, Ohio, and Las Vegas experienced high levels of air pollution in 2023. US cities such as Tucson and Albuquerque met the WHO PM 2.5 standard in 2023.

Oceania was once again the cleanest region for air quality in the world in 2023, with all of the countries in the region complying with the air quality standards. New Zealand's capital, Wellington saw a 1 μg/m³ increase in its particulate matter concentration. However, the country still complied with the standards and recorded a PM2.5 concentration of 4.3 μg/m³ in 2023. More than 55% of the 207 reporting cities from the region, met the air quality standards in 2023. You can also look at

16 countries with cleanest energy in the world and

15 cleanest countries in Europe.

Corporations Providing Air Monitoring Services

Regions including Europe, North America, and Oceania are home to some of the cities with the cleanest air in the world. These regions not only excel in green technology and sustainability initiatives such as clean energy and renewable fuel, but also have some of the leading corporations providing top-notch air monitoring products and services. Some of the leading environmental monitoring services providers include Norditech, HORIBA, Ltd. (OTC:HRIBF) and Teledyne Technologies Incorporated (NYSE:TDY). Let's discuss them in detail below.

The leading NATA accredited environmental monitoring company in Australia, Norditech provides monitoring services for ambient air quality, particulate matter, continuous emissions, tube bundle gas, and water quality. Its wide range of air and emissions monitoring products includes real-time ambient dust monitors, miniature solutions for continuous gas (NO2, SO2, O3, CO) monitoring, sensor-based mini stations, FID analyzers, and NO2 and SO2 analyzers, among others. The company provides 24/7 services in Australia.

HORIBA, Ltd. (OTC:HRIBF) is a Japanese company, operating across Asia, Europe, and the US. The company specializes in the manufacturing and marketing of automotive emission measurement systems, environmental measuring equipment, scientific analyzers, and other equipment. On March 23, HORIBA, Ltd. (OTC:HRIBF) announced that it has released an AP-380 series of analyzers, providing air quality monitoring for different trace gases such as nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, ozone, and hydrocarbons. It features a diverse lineup of five models, catering to different monitoring needs. The new series by the company allows for a flexible combination of modules with a single analyzer, promoting eco-friendliness.

Teledyne Technologies Incorporated (NYSE:TDY) is a leading company providing engineered systems, instrumentation, digital imaging products, and monitoring systems. The company provides a diverse suite of environmental monitoring, water quality sensors, and laboratory systems. Teledyne Technologies Incorporated's (NYSE:TDY) air quality and process gas monitoring business unit, Teledyne API (TAPI), develops precision air quality and industrial gas monitoring equipment, used for ambient air quality and continuous emission monitoring. On March 12, the company announced that it has acquired Valeport Holdings Limited, a leader in environment, energy, construction, and defense sensor technology. This will help Teledyne Technologies Incorporated (NYSE:TDY) expand its technology offering with Valeport's underwater sensors.

Now that we have discussed the global air quality outlook and talked about the companies providing air quality monitoring products and services, let's have a look at the 20 cities with the cleanest air in the world. You can also look at

16 companies with the highest sustainable revenue in the US.

20 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World
20 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World

Copyright: jakobradlgruber / 123RF Stock Photo

Methodology

To create our list of the 20 cities with the cleanest air in the world, we utilized IQ Air's live air quality index. Our list ranks the cities in descending order of their AQI, as of April 26. We have also mentioned the PM2.5 and other pollutant concentrations of the cities, where available. For cities with the same AQI, we have used their PM2.5 concentration to break the tie.

Note: We excluded conflict-affected countries such as Ukraine and Afghanistan.

20 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World

20. Detroit, USA

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 23

Detroit is ranked among the cities with the cleanest air in the world. The city has an AQI index of 23, as of April 26. Its PM2.5 concentration is 5.5 μg/m³.

19. Los Angeles, USA

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 21

Los Angeles has an AQI index of 21 and a PM2.5 concentration of 5 μg/m³. It is ranked 19th on our list of the cleanest cities for air quality.

18. Washington DC, USA

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 21

Washington ranks 18th on our list. Its air quality index is 21, as of April 26. It has a fine particulate matter concentration of 5 μg/m³.

17. Toronto, Canada

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 20

Toronto is placed 17th on our list. It has a PM2.5 concentration of 4.6 μg/m³. Other major pollutants reported by the city include O3 and NO2.

16. Helsinki, Finland

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 20

Helsinki is ranked 16th among the cleanest cities in the world. As of April 26, it has an air quality index of 20. Its PM2.5 concentration is 3.6 μg/m³.

15. Sydney, Australia

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 19

Sydney is ranked 15th on our list. The city has an air quality index of 19, as of April 26. Its PM2.5 concentration is 4.5 μg/m³.

14. Houston, USA

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 18

Houston has an AQI of 18 and a PM2.5 concentration of 4.4 μg/m³, as of April 26. It is one of the cities with the cleanest air in the world.

13. Canberra, Australia

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 18

Canberra is ranked 13th on our list of cities with the cleanest air in the world. The city has an AQI of 18. It has a PM2.5 concentration of 3.1 μg/m³ and a PM10 concentration of 19.3 μg/m³.

12. Athens, Greece

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 17

Athens is the capital of Greece. It has a PM2.5 concentration of 4.5 μg/m³. It is the 12th cleanest city for air quality in the world.

11. Melbourne, Australia

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 17

Melbourne ranks 11th on our list and has an AQI of 17 and a PM2.5 concentration of 4.1 μg/m³, as of April 26. It is among one of the cities with the cleanest air in the world.

10. Zagreb, Croatia

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 17

Another city with the cleanest air quality in the world is Zagreb. It has a PM2.5 concentration of 4 μg/m³ and a PM10 concentration of 5.4 μg/m³.

9. Krakow, Poland

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 17

Krakow is a city in Southern Poland. As of April 26, it has an AQI of 17. Its PM2.5 concentration is 4 μg/m³. It is ranked 9th on our list of the cleanest cities in the world.

8. Dublin, Ireland

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 12

Dublin is one of the cities with the cleanest air in the world. Its PM2.5 concentration is 3 μg/m³ and a PM10 concentration is 6.7 μg/m³.

7. Stockholm, Sweden

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 12

Stockholm is the capital and one of the biggest cities in Sweden, As of April 26, it has a PM2.5 concentration of 3 μg/m³ and a PM10 concentration of 4.1 μg/m³. It is ranked ranked 7th on our list.

6. Denver, USA

Live Air Quality Index (2024): 9

Denver is the capital of Colorado, USA. The city has an air quality index of 9, as of April 26. With a PM2.5 concentration is 2.3 μg/m³, it is ranked 6th on our list of the cities with the cleanest air in the world.

Click to continue reading and see 5 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World.

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Disclosure: None. 20 Cities with the Cleanest Air in the World is originally published on Insider Monkey.