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99 of the World’s 100 Most Environmentally At Risk Cities Are in Asia

99 of the World’s 100 Most Environmentally At Risk Cities Are in Asia

It’s clear that cities everywhere are uniquely threatened by the environment. Not just climate change, but other issues, such as air quality, water pollution and resource restrictions are becoming increasingly significant in mega-cities.

A recent report by global risk analytics firm Verisk Maplecroft concludes that 99 of the most environmentally threatened cities are in Asia. BRINK spoke to the author of the report, Will Nichols, head of Environment and Climate Risk Research at Verisk Maplecroft.

NICHOLS: One of the key things that is driving the Asian risk score so high is air quality. While we do have air quality issues in Europe, for example, in London and some of the Eastern European cities, Asia really is far and away ahead of that.

Air pollution and water pollution, alongside water stress — the availability of water and water demand — are all aggravated by a growing population, and we see quite high population growth rates in many of these Asian countries, which is compounding these risks.

There are also issues around natural hazards such as flooding or earthquakes or droughts in many Asian cities. So for example, Jakarta, which is the number one city on our index, not only has issues around air quality and water pollution and wood stress. It’s also got real threats from flooding and earthquakes. And all these impacts are all going to be exacerbated as climate change kicks in, as well.

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