It is refreshing to breathe fresh, unpolluted air, but that usually has to occur where an abundance of forests are natural air filters or where unpopulated large areas are covered with trees. However, there are countries that strive to do everything possible to keep their air clean.
Here are seven of the least toxic countries in the world, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) and data from the International Energy Agency.
Iceland is ranked number one as the country with the world’s cleanest air. Most residents live in the capital, Reykjavik, which runs on geothermal power. Despite its high population, Reykjavik has the highest air quality in the country. The whole country is powered solely by geothermal energy and hydropower, and there is continuous production of renewable energy.
Estonia is one of Europe’s greenest countries and is one with the cleanest air in the whole globe. It has 52 percent of it in forest in its over 1,500 islands in the Baltic sea.
According to one of the world’s air quality measurement stations, located in the Pallas-YIIastunturi National Park, Finland holds the title of the cleanest air in Europe. Finland holds a spot in the top three countries with the best air quality.
Sweden has been one of the most forward-thinking nations. It has been working towards becoming one of the world’s first fossil fuel-free countries. As of 2015, 57% of Sweden’s power was produced from renewable sources, and the rest came from nuclear power. They are paving the way in environmental innovation.
Canada has a very low population density and vast expanses of forest-covered land, which is partially responsible for their clean air. Air quality continued to improve despite increasing motor fuel consumption and energy. In past years, awareness of air pollution’s danger to health created a demand for change that encouraged technological improvements.
Even though Denmark is a neighbor of heavily-industrialized Germany, it has managed to keep the air pollution level to half of Germany’s. Denmark has more than twice as many bicycles as cars –approximately 4.2 million versus 1.8 million, respectively — which has led to low emission of air pollution.
Despite having similar air pollution to Estonia and Iceland, the United States is worth mentioning because it currently has one of the lowest death rates attributed to air pollution.
Air quality is improving in many areas, largely because of innovations in technology. Hopefully, we can continue this progress into the future.