Friday, April 2, 2010

Air Pollution and Our Environment.

Air pollution is the unwanted changes in the quality of the Earth’s atmosphere caused by the emission of gases and of particulates, which are small particles of solid matter or droplets of liquids. The main effect of air pollution is on the health of human beings, animals and plants. Air pollutants or the substances which pollute air come mainly from the internal combustion of engines of automobiles and other vehicles used for transportation.

Carbon monoxide is the major air pollutant. 81.2 percent of the air pollution is caused by the incomplete combustion of petroleum products. This rate increases by each second. Transportation is the greatest source of air pollutants. Gasoline burning engine is the chief producer of these pollutants. As vehicles in the road increases, the production of carbon monoxide will increase. And all these increased levels result in the decline of human life span. Industries are also responsible for producing pollutants. Hydrocarbons are the main pollutants emitted which are produced mainly in chemical, drug, paint, rubber and plastic industries.

Air pollution affects mainly on life and property. As pollutants emitted into the atmosphere are usually diluted by the air and dissipated by winds, episodes of disease and death due to pollution have been short in duration and infrequent. About 1.3 billion urban residents worldwide are exposed to air pollution level above the recommended limit. The effects of air pollution on the body are delayed and immediate. Immediate effects are disorders of the respiratory system. Some of the delayed effects are Chronic Bronchitis, Lung Cancer, and Asthma etc. Healthy people do not normally notice any effects from air pollution, except when the pollution is very high. However, people sensitive to pollution, such as asthmatics and those with weak heart conditions or lung diseases may experience distress and health effects, even at lower levels of pollution.

Health of green plants will also become weak as the air pollution increases. Today, chronic damage is being inflicted on agricultural, forest and ornamental vegetation by increasing varieties and quantities of air pollutants. Plants productivity of fruit and their growth have been inhibited. Plants are most vulnerable to pollution. Even if an air around a desert is polluted, plants near seas will also get affected. Plants require pure oxygen for their respiration, but at the present stage, they are only able to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. What if you don’t get oxygen to breath and atmosphere is full of carbon dioxide, the same thing will happen to plants too. In the end the result will be the same, death.

Effects on climate are the most intriguing aspect of air pollution. It is thought by some meteorologists that rainfall or snowfall may be caused to increase by inadvertent cloud seeding with particulates and other pollutants. There are other experts who fear that a quite different fate awaits the Earth- almost the opposite, in fact. This is what we are facing now, Global Warming. Temperature of Earth has increased gradually and in 2010 it has almost touched 40 degree Celsius in many countries around the world. This is mainly caused due to ozone layer depletion.

If humans do not wish to change soon, the Earth will be burning after fifty years. Remember that inventions are for humans to make their life easier and to decrease their life span. Around 1950’s the humans had lived for more than 80 years on an average. But now this number has decreased to the range of fifty’s. What will be it after fifty years?

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