This chapter presents the overview of the topic about the causes and effects of air pollution to our environment. The term air pollution is a mixture of natural and manmade substances in the air we breath such as fine particles produced by the burning of fossils fuel ground level ozone, which is a reactive form of oxygen that is a primary component of urban smog and noxious gases such as sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, and chemical vapors. The health effects of air pollution have been reported in research studies over the past 30 years. These effects include respiratory diseases such as asthma, cardiovascular diseases changes in lung development in children.
What pollutants affect air quality?
A few air pollutants, called criteria air pollutants, are common throughout the United States. These pollutants can injure health, harm the environment and cause property damage. The current criteria pollutants are carbon monoxide, lead nitrogen oxide, ozone, particulate matter with aerodynamic size less than or equal to 10 micrometers, and sulfur dioxide.
What are the causes of air pollution?
There are many causes of air pollution examples of these are burning of plastics, vehicles, heavy factories and scattered garbage. These research aims to give and share information and knowledge to the readers regarding to the topic. The purpose of conducting this research is to emphasize on how pollution affects are mankind and the environment. It will also help us to know more about pollution and how we can avoid and save our mother earth. And what are the causes and effects of air pollution.
The objectives of these research is to understand the environment and its component to human life, it gives information about the cause and effects brought by the fast spreading of pollution, it also determine the sources of pollution.
As the fast moving fluid medium in the environment the atmosphere has always been one of the convenient place to despise of unwanted materials. Ever since we first used fire, the atmosphere has been a sink for waste disposal.
I. INDOOR POLLUTION
We have to spend a considerable of effort and money to control the major outdoor air pollutants but we have only recently become aware of the danger of indoor air pollutants. The EPA has formed that indoor concentration of toxic air pollutants are often higher than outdoor. Furthermore, people generally spend more time inside than out and therefore are exposed to higher closes of these pollutants. In some cases indoor air in home has chemical concentrations that would be illegal outside or when the workplace. Under some circumstances compounds and styrene can be seventy time higher indoor air than in outdoor in.
II. POLLUTION CONTROL
For dater stationary and mobile sources of air pollutants the most reasonable strategies for control have been to reduce, collect, capture or retain the pollutants before they enter the atmosphere. From an environmental view point, the reduction of emissions through energy efficiency and conservation measures, we disease pollutants control for selected air pollutants.
A. POLLUTION CONTROL: PARTICULATES
Particulates emitted from fugitive, point, or area stationary source are much easier to control than are the very small particulates of primary or secondary origin release from mobile sources, such as automobile. As you learn more about these very small particles, we will have to devise new methods to control them.
Particulates from fugitive sources must be controlled or site so the wind does not blow them the atmosphere. Methods include protecting open areas controlling dust, and reducing the effects of wind.
B. POLLUTION CONTROL: AUTOMOBILES
Control the pollutants such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide and hydro carbon in urban areas is but achieved through pollution control measures for automobiles. Control of this material will also limit ozone formation in the lower atmosphere. Since ozone forms through reaction, with nitrogen oxide and hydrocarbons in the presence of sunlight.
Nitrogen oxides from automobile exhaust are controlled by recirculation exhaust gas diluting the air to fuel mixture being burned in the engine. Delusion reduces the temperatures of combustion and decrease the oxygen concentration in the burning mixtures, resulting in the production of fewer nitrogen oxides. Unfortunately the same process increase hydrocarbons emissions. Nevertheless, exhaust the circulation the reduce nitrogen oxide emissions has been common practice in the United States for more than 20 years.
C. POLLUTION CONTROL: SULFUR DIOXIDE
Sulfur dioxide emissions can be reducing through basic measures performed before, during or after combustion. Technology to clean up coal so it will burn more cleanly is already available. Although the cause of removing sulfur mix fuel more expensive, the expense must be balanced against the long term consequences of burning sulfur- rich coal.
Changing from high- sulfur coal low sulfur coal seems solution to reducing emissions of sulfur dioxide. In some regions, this change will work. Unfortunately most low sulfur coal in the United States is located in the Western part of the country, whereas, must coal is burn in the east. Thus, transportation is an issues use of low- sulfur coal is a solutions only in cases where it is economically feasible.
III. GENERAL EFFECTS OF AIR POLLUTION
The effects of air pollution on vegetation are numerous. They include damage to leaf tissue, needles and fruit reduction in growth rates are sufficient of growth, increase susceptibility to a variety of diseases, pests, and adverse weather and disruption of reproductive processes.
Air pollutants is a significant factor in the human death rate for many large cities, for example, it has been estimated that in Athens, Greece, the number of death is several times higher on days when the air is heavenly polluted and in Hungary, where are pollution has been a serious problem in recent years.
Air pollution effects many aspects of our environment its visual qualities, vegetation, animals, soils, water quality, natural and artificial structures and human health. Air pollutants affects the visual resources by discoloring the atmosphere and by reducing visual range and atmospheric clarity so that the visual contrast of distant objects is decrease.
IV. CLEAN AIR LEGISLATION
The clean air act amendments of 1990 are comprehensive revelations enacted by the U.S congress that address acid rain, toxic emissions, ozone depletion, and automobile exhaust. In dealing with acid deposition, the amendments established limits of the maximum permissible emissions 0f sulfur dioxide from utility companies for new coil.
The 1990 amendments also call for reduction emission of nitrogen dioxide by approximately 2 million from the 1980 level. Greater reduction would be difficult because large amount of nitrogen oxide emissions are related to automobiles, rather than to coal burning power plants.
The clean air amendments also deal with ozone depletion in the stratosphere. The goal is to end the production of all CFC and other chlorine chemicals and steps by 2030. Environmentalist can also purchase these permits to keep them from being bought by utility companies, forcing the utility companies to use more vigorous pollution abatement techno. Buying of permits by environmentalist however, has not been a major factor. An innovative aspect of the legislation is to provide incentives to utility companies to reduced emissions of sulfur dioxide by providing marketable permits that allow companies to buy and sell the right to pollute.
VII. SOURCES AND CAUSES
Motor vehicle emissions are one of the leading causes of air pollution. China, United States, Russia, Mexico, and Japan are the world leaders in air pollution emissions, however, Canada is the number 2 country ranked per capita. Principal stationary pollution sources include chemical plants, coal fired power plants, oil refineries petro chemical plants nuclear waste disposal activity, incinerators, large livestock forms, PVC factories, metals production factories, plastics, and other heavy industry.
Some of the more common soil contaminations are chlorinated hydrocarbons heavy metals, MTBE, zinc, arsenic, and benzene. Ordinary municipal landfills are the sources of many chemical substances entering the soil environment emanating from the wide variety of refuse accepted especially substances illegally discarded there, are from pre- 1970 landfills that may have been subject to little control in the U.S or EU. There have also been some unusual releases of poly chlorinated dibenzodioxins, commonly called dioxins for simplicity such as TCDD.
Pollution can also be the consequences of a natural disaster. For example, hurricanes often involve water contamination from sewage, and petrochemical spills from ruptured boats or automobiles. Larger scale and environmental damage is not uncommon when coastal oil rings or refineries are involved. Some sources of pollution such as nuclear power plants or oil tankers can produce widespread and potentially hazardous releases when accidents occur.
In the case of noise pollution dominant source class in the motor vehicles producing abut ninety percent of all unwanted noise worldwide.
A. HUMAN HEALTH
Adverse air quality can kill many organism including human. Ozone pollution can cause respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease, threat inflammation, chest pain, and congestion. Water pollution causes approximately 14,000 deaths per day, mostly due to contamination of drinking water by untreated sewage in developing countries. Oil spiles can cause skin irritation and rashes, Noise pollution induces hearing loss, high blood pressure, stress, and sleep disturbance.
Sulfur dioxide and oxides of nitrogen can cause acid rain which reduces the PH value of soil affect other organisms in the flood web. Smog and haze can reduce the amount of sunlight received by plants to carryout photosynthesis. Invasive species can out compete native species plants can contribute debris and biomlecules that can alter soil and chemical compositions of an environment, often reducing native species competitiveness. Biomagnifications describes a situation where toxins may be pass through tropic levels, becoming exponentially more concentration in the process.
Ozone is a gas. It can be good or bad depending on where it is “good” ozone occurs naturally about 10 to 30 miles above the earth surface. It shields us from the seems ultraviolet rays. Part of the god ozone layer is gone destroyed by manmade chemicals. Without enough god ozone, people may get too much ultraviolet radiation. This may increase the risk of skin cancer, cataracts and immune systems problems.
“Bad” ozone is at ground level. It forms when pollutants from cars, factories, and other sources react chemically with sunlight. It is the main ingredient in smog. It is usually worst in the summer. Breathing lead ozone can be harmful causing throat irritation worsening of asthma, bronchitis and emphysema, and even permanent lung damage, if you are regularly exposed to it.
VIII. OUTDOOR AIR POLLUTION: POSSIBLE HEALTH EFFECTS
What symptom does air pollution cause?
Air pollution can irritate the eyes, throat and lungs. Burning eyes cough and chest tightness are common with exposure to high levels of air pollution. Different people can react very differently to air pollution. Some people may notice chest tightness are cough, while others may not noticed any effects. Because exercise requires faster deeper breathing, it may increase the symptoms. People with heart disease such as angina or with lung disease asthma or emphysema may be very sensitive to air pollution exposure, and may notice symptoms when others do not.
This chapter presents the discussion entitled the causes and effects of air pollution to our environment. Air pollution discussed treats pollution as a result of the rapids rise of the human populations and one of the causes of changes of the environment which usually being about destruction of biotech communities.
The causes and effect of air pollution in our environment cannot be abolish if only the people abuse and neglect the significance of environment and the community. So, I therefore conclude that the cause and effect of air pollution to our environment can avoided if we make proper used in the environment in the importance and cleanliness of this and needed of human life.
In setting standards to protect public health from the effect of air pollutants the concept of their holds may not be useful because certain population groups are very sensitive and effects and detected even at low levels. To enable the development of effective risk reduction strategies based on qualitative and quantitative knowledge, further data analysis and more comprehensive monitoring is recommended.
In addition to the pollutants discussed in this study, other aspects of air pollution should also be addressed in the development of air pollution policy in Europe. These include air pollutants such as carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, persistent organic pollutants, certain metals, certain volatile organic compounds, and nitrogen trichloride. The combined effects of the urban air pollution mix also an important issue that remains unresolved.
Bolkin B. Principle of Environment Science Inquiry and Application 2nd Ed. Boston: mc Graw-Hill 2004
Cunningham M. Environmental Science Earth as a Living Planet. John Wiley and Sons. Inc. 2005
James S. Earth Science; World Worth, Publication
Kurt F. Annual Edition: Social Problem; Mc Graw- Hill/ Duskin C2003
Oledan T. The Case for Pollution Prevention, Environment and the Law. Vol. VI No. 9 March 2007
Saspa J.P. Environment. Poison in the Air Free Press
Vol. XCIV No. 3 January 18,2002
Schaeter T. Sociology -9th Ed. Boston; Mc Graw –Hill Int’l. C2005
Smitch L. Environmental Geology – 6th Ed. Boston: Mc Graw – Hill C2003
Soriano L. Save Mother Earth. Environmental Science Manila:
Phoenix Publication: C1995
Thomas M. Elements of Ecology -14th Ed. Addition Wesley Longman Inc. C2002