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by Arushi Madan | 17-09-2015 18:38 recommendations 0

Air pollution in Yemen is caused by a variety of factors , including emissions from vehicles , power plants and the widespread use of heavy construction tools such as industrial saws. The main source of air pollution , however, particularly in cities such as Sana'a , is emissions from cars and other vehicles. In Sana'a there are more than 300,000 vehicles , many of which are very old having being brought into the country by returning Yemenis after the Gulf war in 1990. After the 1990 Gulf War, thousands of Yemenis returned to their homes and brought their cars with them. A lot of the cars were very old and polluted the environment. The majority of these vehicles use leaded gasoline or local diesel, which contains a high level  of impurities. 


Infact , Yemen remains one of the few countries worldwide that continues to use leaded gasoline in it's cars and other vehicles. There are very few lead-free petrol stations. 

The pollutant concentrations are  estimated to be several times higher than the set standards for air quality.


Air pollution is unpleasant and unhealthy. Breathing highly polluted air from exhaust fumes on daily basis can cause severe respiratory and renal problems. Air pollution represents a financial and environmental burden on Yemeni government. In 2008 , Yemen's Ministry of Environment and Water acknowledged the severity of the problem and started working on national strategy to reduce air pollution. The authorities have since then implemented a few simple measures to improve the air quality e.g. vehicles which were manufactured before year 2000 are no longer permitted entry into the country. The authorities have also reduced the tax on new cars to encourage more people to invest in newly built , modern and more environmentally friendly vehicles.


Another  source of air pollution in Yemen , particularly around it's coastal areas, is the oil industry. Although oil accounts for a large part of Yemen's revenue and is an invaluable economic resource, it's production , exploration and transportation have contributed significantly to air pollution in coastal and marine areas.


Urbanisation , desalination plants , mining , quarrying are all responsible for worsening air pollution in Yemen.


The Ministry of Water and Environment (MWE) is working to reduce air pollution caused by vehicle emissions and thus save on associated health costs amounting to an estimated US$100 million a year in Sanaa alone. 

Pollution in Yemen

Air Pollution



Drinking Water Pollution and Inaccessibility


Very High

Dissatisfaction with Garbage Disposal


Very High

Dirty and Untidy


Very High

Noise and Light Pollution



Water Pollution



Dissatisfaction to Spend Time in the City


Very High

Dissatisfaction with Green and Parks in the City


Very High

Purity and Cleanliness in Yemen

Air quality



Drinking Water Quality and Accessibility


Very Low

Garbage Disposal Satisfaction


Very Low

Clean and Tidy


Very Low

Quiet and No Problem with Night Lights



Water Quality



Comfortable to Spend Time in the City


Very Low

Quality of Green and Parks


Very Low


The worst is the ongoing " Yemeni Civil War "that began in March 2015 between two factions claiming to constitute the Yemeni government, along with their supporters and allies. As air raids continue to batter  Yemen, it is heavily polluting it's air and leaving deep environmental scars.




Sources :Numbeo , Yemen today 



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  • Dormant user Arushi Madan


Asmita Gaire

  • Asmita Gaire says :
    Hello arushi
    I hope you are doing wellpvery detailed report
    Thank you so much for this report
    Keep writing
    Green cheers
    Asmita Gaire
    Posted 30-05-2020 20:30

  • says :
    Thanks for such a detailed report dear Arushi!
    Posted 04-11-2015 01:14

  • Luiz Bispo says :
    Thanks for showing us about Yemen situation of air pollution! Keep sharing!
    Posted 20-09-2015 10:20

  • says :
    Dear Arushi sister, it is so disheartening to see the environmental degradation of Yemen due to ongoing conflict.Provision is to be made to abandon leaded gasoline use in vehicles. Glad to know that the strategy for reducing tax on new vehicles is encouraged.
    Thank you for the report dear Arushi sister :)
    Posted 19-09-2015 11:08

  • says :
    Thank you for the report... And the pictures,,, I have never seen that much smoke before.
    Very toxic indeed.

    Much needs to be done to alleviate,
    air pollution.
    A young environmental advocate
    like you is one solution.
    Posted 18-09-2015 16:44

  • Anthony Emecheta says :
    Air pollution as high as 70? That is very high and something needs to be done urgently. More worrisome is the drinking water. Thank you Arushi for this report
    Posted 18-09-2015 12:43

  • says :
    Arushi, Oil is off a high global interest and countries do not want to joke with its exploration - regardless of future consequences. I think Yemen should be more attentive to nuclear pollution from blasting and other related weapons, they are hazardous and persistent - take long years before they leave the environment.
    Posted 18-09-2015 06:42

  • Arushi Madan says :
    Thanks Bikal. Glad that you like my reports.
    Posted 17-09-2015 21:44

  • says :
    I always want to be omnivorous reader when I go through each of your article. so nicely elaborated.. thanks for sharing Arushi (Y)
    Posted 17-09-2015 21:09

  • says :
    Thank you for a detailed report on Air pollution in Yemen,Arushi.
    Posted 17-09-2015 19:53

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