In India, air quality has been improving despite the COVID-19 lockdown

India is home to some of the world’s most polluted cities. An unintended but welcomeshutterstock_761795974 consequence of the lockdown to contain the coronavirus has been improved air quality throughout the country.  Our assessment of India’s air quality trends has found another underlying and positive trend: air quality has been improving across the country since 2018, and this has nothing to do with the COVID-19 lockdown. 

Growing Threat of Air Pollution

Poor air quality has come to be recognized as a serious health risk and drag on economic development in India. Air quality has been deteriorating across the country since the 1990s, and in 2017 as much as 97 percent of the country’s population was estimated to be exposed to unhealthy levels of ambient PM2.5.  Though there are many types of air pollutants, these small particulates in the air, about one-thirtieth the width of a human hair, are the most harmful to human health.  They can penetrate deep into the lungs, enter the bloodstream and cause deadly illnesses such as lung cancer, stroke, and heart disease.

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7 ways to help understand the world’s challenges in 2020—and have hope for the future

Unprecedented, devastating, pervasive. No matter how you describe the COVID-19 KenyaLeaderpandemic, for billions around the world the virus has changed life as we knew it.  We are living through a remarkable period of history, one that will affect each of us for decades to come.

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COVID-19 has put food out of reach for many. Can technology create a more sustainable food system?

The short answer is yes. De-concentration, de-centralization and data are building blocks of a more sustainable food system post-COVID-19. Explore how in this in-depth analysis.

Free masks: A new initiative in the Central African Republic has seen the production of more than two million masks in just two months, looking to generate more than 1.6 million workdays and inject about $17 million into the local economy.

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Social protection for migrants during the COVID-19 crisis: The right and smart choice

The COVID-19 pandemic and the transmission control measures it has necessitated have migrants_blogabruptly halted the movement of people that characterizes our interconnected world. The implications are enormous for migrants, who rely on working away from home to support themselves, their families, and their communities. Many of them are now in conditions that put them at greater risk of contracting COVID-19. The pandemic is also affecting critical sectors like agriculture where labor shortages are looming.

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With COVID-19, the case for sustainable transport is stronger than ever

As cities gradually exit COVID-19 quarantines and reopen their economies, some

KUTEI (Kabul Urban Transport Effciency Improvment)

observers are suggesting that public transport might increase contagion risk and that private cars should be considered the only safe alternative.

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The role of trade in promoting women’s equality

New trends in global trade—especially the rise in services, global value chains, and the digital economy—are opening up important economic opportunities for women. A new report marks the first major effort to quantify how women are affected by trade through the use of a new gender-disaggregated labor dataset.

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The circular economy can support COVID-19 response and build resilience

Relief, restructuring and resilient recovery key to building back better

The COVID-19 pandemic demands World Bank engagement with unprecedented speed, scale and selectivity. We’re organizing our crisis response across the three stages of relief, restructuring, and resilient recovery. Learn more about our priorities for broad and fast action with our new crisis response paper, Saving Lives, Scaling-up Impact and Getting Back on Track.

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Four strategies for helping women in fragile settings succeed in the digital economy

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is disproportionately impacting women’s ng-click on kaduna4-wblivelihoods. Young women are more prone to unemployment and under-employment than men, and many work in service and informal sector jobs that have been most disrupted during the crisis.

As part of their COVID-19 response, governments are exploring digital solutions to promote economic recovery. However, gender gaps in internet use and mobile phone access mean that job opportunities in the digital economy remain out of reach for many women. This inequality is exacerbated in communities affected by fragility, conflict and violence (FCV), where women often face greater safety and security concerns, significant mobility constraints, and restrictive sociocultural norms. This is the case in Kaduna, a state in northern Nigeria affected by years of conflict and instability.

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What do we know about the relationship between air pollution and COVID-19?

The global COVID-19 lockdown to contain the spread of the virus has severely restricted economic activity, and reports are emerging from across the globe of blue skies becoming visible, in some cases for the first time in people’s lifetime. These improvements will likely dissipate as lockdowns are lifted, and economic activity resumes. Will the air once again become polluted, or is there a possibility for countries to use economic recovery programs to grow back stronger and cleaner? Discover in our latest analysis!

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