Top Ten Most Polluted Places in the World, 2012

This Top Ten list was compiled by the Technical Advisory Board of the Blacksmith Institute, an environmental NGO based in New York. The criteria used in ranking include the size of the affected population, the severity of the toxins involved, and reliable evidence of health problems associated with the pollution.

CountryProblemMain Pollutant ExposurePathway
Linfen, ChinaAir Pollution Coal dust, fly ash, carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide and arsenic Inhalation
Bhopal, IndiaIndustrial Chemicals Isocyanate gas, pesticide productionIngestion of contaminated groundwater
Central Kalimantan province, IndonesiaArtisanal Gold Mining Mercury Inhalation of airborne vapors
Kasargod, India Pesticide Endosulfan Inhalation, ingestion
Dzerhinsk, RussiaChemical weapons manufacture Chemical wasteIngestion of contaminated groundwater
Sumgayit, Azerbaijan Industrial and Agricultural Chemical ProductionOrganic chemicalsInhalation of airborne vapors
Tianying, ChinaContaminated Surface Water Lead Inhalation, ingestion
Sukinda, IndiaMetals Processing and MiningHexavalent chromium Inhalation, ingestion
Chernobyl, Ukraine Radiation Radioactive wasteIngestion
Arctic Canada Organic chemical accumulationPersistent organic pollutants (POPs)Ingestion
Source: the Blacksmith Institute, 2012. Web: http://www.worstpolluted.org/ .

Information PleaseĀ® Database, Ā© 2010 Pearson Education, Inc. All rights reserved.

Safe Drinking Water Reports and Hotline Environment User's Guide to Environmental Language
Top Ten Most Polluted Places in the World, 2009

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

12 Pumpkin Activities and Crafts for Kids
Pumpkins and gourds are perfect for fall fun and games with the kids. Find the best pumpkin activities, crafts, printables, and recipes to enjoy with your children this Halloween season.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

15 Best Slow Cooker Meals
Too busy to cook? Try one of these deliciously easy slow cooker meals and have dinner waiting when you get home!

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!