Iraq faces severe pollution crisis with 23 million tons of daily garbage

Iraq generates 23 million tons of garbage each day, positioning it as the second most polluted country globally, according to the Strategic Center for Human Rights.

“Each Iraqi citizen produces over two kilograms of garbage daily, contributing to the country’s total of 23 million tons of garbage per day, which significantly impacts air quality,” stated Fadhil al-Azawi, head of the Strategic Center for Human Rights in Iraq.

A study by Swiss company IQ Air revealed that Iraq was the world’s second most polluted country in 2023, following Chad, which leads with 89.7 micrograms of particulate matter per cubic meter.

The study ranks Iraq second, with Pakistan, Bahrain, and Bangladesh following.

Azawi emphasized multiple factors behind Iraq’s severe air pollution, notably the high volume of garbage, its burning near urban areas, and the inadequate facilities for garbage collection and treatment.