Would you not want to breathe in fresh and clean air free of any chemicals? Don’t you feel suffocated whenever you are stepping out of your house? Don’t you feel that every year heat from the sun is becoming intolerable, and the monsoon is gradually vanishing? Have you ever thought that why these things are becoming rampant and how it can be solved?
The reason behind the rise in the earth’s temperature and low rainfall is occurring simply because of air pollution. Who would have thought that a gradual rise in air pollution will make life miserable and problematic? Air pollution lately has become a common global issue that is affecting almost every country.
The breathing of toxic air has become a major environmental threat that can cause early death, harmful diseases, and whatnot. When the air becomes contaminated with toxic chemical compounds that can cause severe health issues and death, then it can be termed as air pollution. These chemical compounds destroy the quality of air, which in turn affects life.
It has been found that the causes of air pollution take the life of almost seven million people every year. According to data by the World Health Organization, about nine out of ten people every day are breathing toxic air that contains a massive amount of air pollutants. Smog is one of the common types of air pollution that affects not only your health but also the climate.
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Why air pollution is harmful?
Air pollution releases harmful gases, fine solids as well as aerosols at a massive rate, which the environment fails to remove it from the air. Due to these reasons, all of these harmful substances get mixed up with the air, which finally leads to various diseases, and also affects the economic condition as well.
If you think that air pollution is only taking place outside your household, then you are wrong. It begins even from the household as well. One of the most common problems of air pollution is global warming, which causes a major imbalance in the atmospheric gases.
Different types of pollutants
If you want to know about air pollution, then at first you need to have an idea of the pollutants. Pollutants are mainly the elements, particles, as well as the molecules that cause air pollution, are extremely harmful, and it affects not only human beings but also the plants and animals as well. Different types of contaminants lead to the cause of air pollution massively. Some of the common and significant types of pollutants are listed below,
The primary pollutants mostly caused due to primary or secondary sources. Most of the pollutants that take place directly are known as the primary pollutants. One of the common examples of a primary pollutant that can be included as the causes of air pollution is a sulfur-dioxide, which most of the factories emit.
The secondary pollutants are those that occur to the interference and the reactions of the primary pollutants. One of the common examples of secondary pollutants in smog, which causes when the primary pollutants react with each other.
What causes air pollution?
Every day you are breathing in toxic air, which is eventually affecting your health. Some of the major threatening diseases are one of the significant causes of air pollution. The amount of air pollution you are breathing in daily depends on a lot of factors. Some of the common ones are the amount of clean energy you are getting for everyday household chores. It is important to understand that no one is safe from air pollution and its effects. Some of the common components of air pollution are nitrogen oxide, hydrocarbons, nitrogen dioxide, and sulfur dioxide. Nevertheless, are listed below are some of the other causes of air pollution.
Fossil fuel burning
The burning of fossil fuels leads to some of the significant effects of air pollution, which has become one of the common reasons for air pollution. Sulfur-dioxide is one of the major chemical compounds, that emit due to the burning of fossil fuels. The factories and the industries commonly burn fossil fuels such as petroleum, coal, and other combustible things that cause air pollution. Emissions from vehicles also contribute to huge air pollution, and everyday vehicles are necessary for fulfilling our regular needs for transportation.
But, it is necessary to keep in mind that overusing fossil fuels daily emits harmful gases, which causes air pollution. Another chemical compound, which is emitted from the vehicles due to improper combustion of the fuels, also results in massive air pollution.
Industries and factories are another reason, and the causes of air pollution since every day these emit a huge amount of harmful gases like carbon monoxide, chemicals, hydrocarbons as well as organic compounds, which results in degrading the air quality. Millions of industries are there in every corner of the world, and the surrounding regions are already affected by the emissions from these industries. Industries account for half of the reason behind the cause of air pollution.
If you think that air pollution only occurs due to the emissions from fossil fuels, vehicles, or the industries, then you have a simple misconception. The dairy products that you are using at your house like cleaning products, sprays, painting supplies are some of the major reasons behind the cause of air pollution. These emit toxic chemicals that can affect the quality of the air, thus causing major air pollution.
When you paint your house, do you feel trouble in breathing? This is because of the presence of harmful chemicals, which creates trouble in breathing. Suspended Particulate Matter is also one of the major indoor reasons behind the causes of air pollution. These keep floating in the air and dust as well as combustion.
Various farming practices
Have you ever thought that agricultural practices can also account for air pollution? The by-products from the agricultural activities as well as the harmful gases, which are emitted due to the burning of the waste materials, release harmful gases. Also, farmers’ use of pesticides, fertilizers, as well as the insecticides for the crops, are enough for polluting air every day.
The mining operation, which takes place inside the mines also causes air pollution. A huge amount of dust particles and harmful chemicals are released, which leads to air pollution. Due to this reason, the people who are living near the mining region fall ill, and their health conditions deteriorate.
Alarming Effects of air pollution
Technology and lifestyle are advancing at an exponential rate, but have you ever realized that in the urge to make life smooth and better, how much harm people are doing to the environment. The lavish lifestyle and the things that we are using every day are one of the major causes of air pollution, which are eventually affecting human health as well as nature. The day is not too far when you would not be getting fresh air to breathe. Various harmful pollutants that are present in the atmosphere adversely affect the plants. It also poses a direct toxic effect simply by bringing change in the soil pH.
Human health also becomes a victim of air pollution that leads to different types of health issues. People suffering from chronic COPD or asthma suffer the most from the effects of air pollution. Due to extreme pollution, it might become quite tough to breathe properly, thus causing coughing, asthma attacks, wheezing, and other issues. Apart from that, air pollution also leads to other threatening health issues like stroke, respiratory diseases, lung cancer, etc. Nevertheless, listed below are some of the effects of air pollution.
Leads to global warming
You must have heard about global warming and how it is affecting in bringing climatic changes. Global warming is one of the direct effects of air pollution, which is leading to immediate changes in the entire world. Due to the rise in the temperature, the sea levels are rising; icebergs are melting at a faster rate, loss of habitat and other problems are taking place. If the problem is not taken care of immediately, then it can bring massive trouble.
Causes acid rain
Emission of harmful gases like sulfur and nitrogen oxides in the atmosphere takes place on the burning of fossil fuels. These toxic gases mix with the rain droplets and then turn acidic. As soon as the water droplets touch the ground, it turns into the acid rain. It is extremely harmful, and the acid rain brings a lot of damage to the animals, plants as well as the crops.
Affects the wildlife
Animals, just like humans, face the consequences of the harmful effects of air pollution. The presence of all the harmful chemicals in air forces them to shift their place and bring changes in the habitat. The deposition of the harmful pollutants over the water surface does affect the sea animals as well. So, not only human life, but also the wildlife does get affected due to air pollution.
Damage to the ozone layer
The ozone layer is responsible for preventing the harmful UV rays of the sun from entering into the earth’s atmosphere. The depletion of the ozone layer is also one of the most significant causes of air pollution. Chlorofluorocarbons, as well as the hydrochlorofluorocarbons, are the major cause behind the depletion of the ozone layer. With the gradual depletion of the ozone layer, UV rays will enter into the earth’s surface, which will cause various skin, as well as eye problems and, will affect the crops as well.
This is another significant effect of air pollution and a condition where a massive amount of nitrogen gathers over the surface of the sea, which then becomes algae. These affect the life under the sea and a lot of animal species, as well as fishes, die. You must have seen the green algae on lakes and ponds, which grow due to the accumulation of nitrogen on the water surface.
Possible air pollution solutions
Coming with major changes overnight is not possible, but you can always begin with small steps and find out effective solutions to the causes of air pollution. Indeed a lot of strict measures are necessary to take if you want to make significant changes in the present condition. Indeed, the damage cannot be reversed, but you can prevent further damage. You should understand that solving the problem requires joint effort, and depending on the severity; steps are necessary to take so that the condition does not get worse any further. Listed below are some of the solutions that are necessary to come up with for reducing air pollution.
As earlier said, you can begin with small steps in solving the problem of air pollution. When not in use, make sure that you are switching off the lights and fans. You should keep in mind that a huge amount of fossil fuels burn regularly for producing electricity. This simple step will help the environment from degrading simply by controlling the amount of fossil fuel burning.
Reduce, reuse, recycle
Nothing can be better than reusing the things that you do not need anymore. Also, you can collect all the degradable as well as biodegradable items, so that you can recycle them. This will also prevent the causes of air pollution.
Use of renewable energy sources
Nothing can replace the wind, solar, or geothermal energy for generating energy. The renewable sources of energy will never extinguish, and also these are not at all harmful to the environment as well. A lot of households, as well as industries these days, have started using solar panels for generating electrical energy, which does help to prevent air pollution.
Opt for a battery-driven car
Burning diesel and petroleum also cause a huge amount of air pollution. Therefore, switching from petroleum or diesel-driven cars to battery cars is undoubtedly one of the best solutions for air pollution.
The problem of air pollution has undoubtedly become one of the burning issues globally, but taking stern steps against the problem will certainly help in solving the issues. Beginning with small steps towards the betterment of the environment will help in making things better.