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Most concerning environmental issues in India 2019

According to a survey by Ipsos, air pollution was the leading environmental concern with 50 percent, followed by global warming/climate change at 43 percent. The survey collected opinions on the most concerning environmental issues in India as of March 2019.

Air pollution and health risks

Besides increased morbidity rates and a shortened life expectancy, poor air quality can have deleterious effects on a person’s health causing respiratory illnesses that negatively impact the quality of life. In addition to respiratory illnesses such as bronchitis, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic exposure to particulate matter also leads to cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Despite India’s commitment to reduce its emission intensity, the country’s burgeoning population projections compounded with rapid economic growth reflect unpromising efforts to avert significant advances in reduction of greenhouse gases. Consequently, this also affects addressing air quality and other environmental issues.

The largest source of greenhouse gases as a result of anthropogenic activities is from burning of fossil fuels for generating heat and electricity primarily for transport, industry and agriculture. India has one of the world’s largest emission volumes of carbon dioxide. The main source of this is coal, which accounts for seven percent of global emissions. 43 percent.

Most concerning environmental issues according to citizens across India as of March 2019

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Release date

April 2019



Survey time period

February 22 to March 8, 2019

Number of respondents


Age group

16-74 years old

Special properties

up to three answers were allowed for each respondent

Method of interview

Online panel

Supplementary notes

Original question: "In your view, what are the three most important environmental issues facing India today? That is, the top environmental issues you feel should receive the greatest attention from your local leaders?"

According to the source, respondents were urban & educated, and with higher incomes than their fellow citizens. They were referred to as “Upper Deck Consumer Citizens”. They were not nationally representative of their country.

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