UAE questions damning World Bank report into air quality

Little Green Data Book claims the UAE has more pollutants per cubic metre than China and more than double that of India
UAE questions damning World Bank report into air quality
A Dubai metro train is seen driving amid a sandstorm that engulfed the city. (Getty Images)
By Neil Halligan
Sun 12 Jul 2015 04:43 PM

The Ministry of Environment and Water has said his department is in contact with the World Bank over its report that said the UAE has the worst air pollution in the world.

The recently-published World Bank’s The Little Green Data Book said the UAE had a rating of 80 micrograms of pollutants per cubic metre - higher than China (73) and more than double that of India (32).

The report was also at odds with data provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which said the UAE has worked on improving the quality of air in the country.

Fahed Hareb, director of air quality at the ministry, said he didn’t understand where the World Bank was getting its data from.

“The data we measure doesn’t even reach half of what they are talking about,” Hareb told The National newspaper.

“There’s no mention of where they get their information. They never contacted us for data so those models can be based on anything. It’s like saying, ‘I think the population of India is 30 million because I heard it somewhere’. We’re in contact with them to try to understand where they got this information.”

With 46 air quality stations in the country, the UAE has a target of 90 percent adherence to the WHO air quality guidelines by 2021.

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