Top urban news, trends and reports curated for the world’s city leaders. Edited by David Hatch

Head to Canada for a breath of fresh urban air

The 115 Canadian cities with healthy air are considered among the cleanest metropolises on the planet. (doomu/

The news is filled with dire headlines about dangerous smog in cities such as Delhi, Beijing and even Paris. For a breath of fresh air, consider heading to Powell River, a small coastal city in the Canadian province of British Columbia. The air there is the cleanest of the 1,600 cities monitored by the World Health Organization, Lydia Ramsey writes for the World Economic Forum.

Canada, in fact, has 115 cities with healthy air that are “the cleanest of the clean.” Even major Canadian cities such as Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa are considered healthy. The United States claims the most cities with safe air at 274, but 69 are near the WHO’s threshold for unacceptable pollution levels.

Sweden and Brunei are among the nations that have taken steps to curb urban air pollution, according to the article, published with Business Insider. In Sweden, two major cities, Stockholm and Gothenberg, have managed to keep levels of dangerous fine particulates to a minimum, Ramsey notes. Portugal’s second largest city, Porto, is its cleanest because it lacks the industrial corridors found elsewhere. Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Spain and Finland also are making strides on urban air quality. 

World Economic Forum

More from Citiscope

Latest Commentary