Photo: Joakim Romson
Krishnakant Budhavant and Prof Örjan Gustafsson at the station in the Maldives. Photo: Joakim Romson

India, Pakistan and Bangladesh are among the countries with the world’s worst air pollution, with the most polluted cities. With nearly 1.8 billion inhabitants in the region, factories, traffic, agriculture, fires and other sources release huge amounts of gases and particles that impact people’s health and the climate.

Department researchers have long been analyzing the air at two strategically placed measurement stations in southern Asia to answer questions such as: what is the total amount of emissions, what are the sources, and how do they affect the climate?

Atmospheric Observatory in the Maldives

One of the stations is located on the island of Hanimaadhoo, in the Maldives, to the southwest of India. This location allows the station to capture emissions from the entire Indian subcontinent as they are carried over the Indian Ocean. The island has insignificant local emission sources that do no interfere with the measurements.

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