Air Pollutants: Prevention, Control And Effects
Air pollution is a global risk factor for disease, death, and disability, with acute health impacts and the burden of chronic diseases. In 2015, the annual global mortality attributable to air pollution was estimated to be 4.0 million  adding to the 9 million deaths attributed to tobacco use and approximately 25% of the global burden of disease. The WHO Regional Office for Europe estimated in 2008 that acute respiratory infections as well as heart disease, stroke and lung cancer were responsible for nearly half a million premature deaths every year in 35 European countries.
What is Air Pollution?
Air pollution occurs when the air contains gases, dust, fumes or odour in harmful amounts. These substances can cause diseases, allergies and even death to humans; they may also cause harm to other living organisms such as animals and food crops, and may damage the natural or built environment. Both human-made and natural sources contribute to air pollution. When people think of air pollution they usually think of smog, acid rain, ozone depletion, or greenhouse gases. For example: burning of fossil fuels by vehicles and factories which release carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere causing global warming; the emission of nitrogen oxides from motor vehicles which causes acid rain and the formation of ground level ozone; industrial processes emitting volatile organic compounds which form ground level ozone; and dust storms in dry areas which contain soil particles that are breathed into the lungs.
Air pollution, a harmful substance to the atmosphere, is caused by both natural and human activities that release substances into the air.
Air pollution is considered as the contamination of the air, irrespective of indoors or outside. It occurs when any harmful gases, dust, smoke enters into the atmosphere and making it difficult for plants, animals and humans to survive as the air becomes polluted. Pollution in the environment could also lead to low visibility due to haze or smog.
Sources of Air Pollutants.
The main source of air pollutants are human activities such as:
Fossil fuel combustion – both motor vehicles and power generation plants emit nitrogen oxides (NOx), Sulphur dioxide (SO2) and particulate matter;
Industrial processes – power generating plants emit carbon monoxide (CO), NOx, SO2 and particulate matter; metal processing plants emit metal particles; paper mills emit chlorine; chemical plants emit VOCs;
Agriculture – the use of ammonia-based fertilizers to increase crop yields causes ammonia to enter the atmosphere;
Waste disposal – landfill sites
Health Problems Related to Air Pollution.
Individuals with lung disease, children, and older adults are the groups most affected by polluted air.
A recent EPA report estimates that exposure to ozone pollution can cause premature death in people suffering from a heart or lung ailments.
A number of studies have linked reduced lung function in children to air pollution.
The same report estimates that exposure to ozone pollution causes hundreds of thousands of asthma attacks each year.
The EPA has estimated that if we could reduce particulate matter pollution to levels prescribed by the Clean Air Act, between 15,000 and 52,000 lives would be saved annually.
Prevention and Control Measures of Air Pollution.
Air Pollution: Prevention and Control Measures of Air Pollution!
- Automobiles should be in proper working condition and properly maintained.
- Use of public transport like buses and railways should be encouraged.
- Vehicle emission testing centres should be set up at regular intervals to check the pollution level of automobiles plying on the roads.
- Emission norms for automobiles should be strictly enforced.
- Use of lead-free petrol or unleaded petrol should be encouraged in all vehicles by giving tax concessions and other incentives.
Air pollution is a major environmental challenge, or urban as well as industrial areas. Air pollution has detrimental effects on both the environment and human health; in addition to being hazardous to human health it also causes damage to materials and structures and has adverse impacts on micro- and macro- weather conditions. In this regard, airborne pollutants have become an important matter of concern all over the world, mainly due to their devastating impacts on human health. In this study we have presented basic information about pollution sources, prevention methods, abatement processes, control measures, and effects of air pollutants with various examples and data
It’s really important to take measures to prevent air pollution to protect our health and the environment.
What is Air Pollution?
Air pollution is the introduction of harmful substances into the air. These substances can be natural, or they can be man-made. Natural substances include dust, pollen and spores, smoke, and sea spray. Man-made substances include methane, carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and other chemical compounds.
Human activities that generate air pollution include industrial processes, burning fossil fuels for energy production and transportation, agricultural practices and waste disposal practices.