Overcoming Madagascar’s Number One Killer: Pollution

Trustees of Indiana University

In Madagascar, where pollution causes nearly one-third of premature deaths, the project team at Indiana University, along with its key partners, will implement the country's action plan to restore the environment and save lives.

Last Updated: December 2023
Competition Participation
100 & Change logo
  • Cameroon
  • China
  • Madagascar
  • Uganda
  • Vietnam
  • Bangladesh
  • Colombia
  • India
  • Madagascar
  • Low-income people
  • People experiencing absolute poverty
  • People in rural areas
  • 3. Good health and well-being
  • 6. Clean water and sanitation
  • 7. Affordable and clean energy

Executive Summary

Contamination of air, soil, and water is the leading cause of death in Madagascar. While other risk factors such as malnutrition and communicable diseases are declining, the burden of pollution continues to rise. The will to address this problem is strong: government agencies have partnered with the Global Alliance on Health and Pollution to draft a Health and Pollution Action Plan that has the support of Malagasy grassroots organizations. However, as one of the world’s poorest countries, Madagascar lacks the resources and expertise to make the necessary changes.

Our project closes the gap between the will and the way. We will join local Malagasy communities and leaders in a multidisciplinary network of experts to identify and address the technical, logistical, and social components of harm reduction. In five years, we will reduce pollution exposure for half the population. In 20 years, we will develop local capacity to bring pollution levels down to developed-country standards.

Organization Details
Lead Organization

Trustees of Indiana University

website: https://SolvePollution.iu.edu
Organization Headquarters
Monroe County, Indiana, United States of America
Organization ID
Number of Full-time Employees
> 1,000
Annual Operating Budget
> $1 Billion

Charity, fund, non-governmental organization, religious institution, school, or other entity

Organizations may provide budget and employee data based on this proposal or the organization as a whole. For more information on this proposal or organization, please email us.


Madagascar has taken significant steps to address pollution. President Andry Rajoelina declared pollution a national priority and has engaged 14 ministries to solve the problem. UNICEF has also increased investment in Madagascar, supporting new government civil organization collaborations to tackle air pollution, such as using new air monitors from Pure Earth to coordinate air quality monitoring in Antananarivo. The Government of Madagascar is working to develop a 10-year roadmap to address pollution. They have held constructive workshops with private and public sectors and are working with consultants to draft the roadmap.


The Lancet Commission for Pollution and Health and Pollution, which is led by members of our team, recently completed its second global assessment. Their report concluded that pollution is still the world’s largest public health crisis, noting that industrial and chemical pollution are increasing and represent the fastest growing concern.


Further, the European Commission awarded our project leaders at PrecisionTox a $23.3 million grant to advance precision toxicology, a science that underlies pollution mapping and remediation efforts.

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