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Air Pollution Problems And Solutions To Overcome It : A “Major Global Crisis” Scenario!

Updated on April 9, 2015

Instances of human beings breaking records by abstaining from food for a long time have been significantly viewed, recorded and appreciated from time immemorial. A few instances have given limelight into people staying without water for a long time and this feat too requires lot of unimaginable will power. Ever wondered how long has somebody survived without Air to breathe? Indeed this question is a dead end to which the only probable answer would be death. It is impossible for mankind and animal/plant kingdom to sustain sans Air.

What Is Clean Air?

Air particles are so minute that it is impossible to spot germs, bacteria and chemical content in it with naked eyes. However science has progressed enough to determine the quality of air at places. In a layman’s language clean air can be explained as “Air devoid of pollution”. At some places we can observe the air being very fresh and clean. Places stationed on the outskirt of cities like farms and hill stations have a pleasant environment and clean breathing air.

Fresh Farms of Meghalaya By rajkumar1220 [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons
Fresh Farms of Meghalaya By rajkumar1220 [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons
Rejunvinating and refreshing environment of Munnar Hill station
Rejunvinating and refreshing environment of Munnar Hill station | Source

On the contrary, inside cities, it can be observed that the air is almost dark in colour. There are several pathogens and chemicals mixed in the air which makes it highly risky for human consumption. Plants also get affected by the menace of unclean air. The produce of crops tends to decrease and this phenomenon also affects wildlife. Domestic animals also develop allergies and fall ill due to this.

Effect of Air Pollution on Plants
Effect of Air Pollution on Plants | Source

Pollution - “The Villain”

Pollution can be anything that instills disturbance in the cleanliness content. Continuous inhaling and exhaling of polluted air causes several diseases, most of which are chronic. Few diseases like bronchitis, tuberculosis and even asthma is the aftermath of consuming unclean air. Major pollutants in air are Carbon Monoxide, Sulfur Dioxide, Nitrogen Dioxide, Lead and CFC (Chlorofluorocarbons).

The major source of accumulation for these pollutants is the smoke from the exhaust of vehicles and discharges from other appliances. Factories and production units contribute in a massive manner to the increase of these pollution causing substances in air. Since this natural resource is the prime reason for our sustenance and stability, adequate measures have to be adopted by all the earthlings to ensure clean and eco-friendly breathing air.

Air Pollution Caused by Factories
Air Pollution Caused by Factories | Source

Pollution vs The World

As cities have expanded there has been a heavy migration of inmates into them. This factor leads to more growth, development and expansion. In turn, this leads to the never ending needs of people. Namely increasing vehicles, increasing CFC emission from AC’s and refrigerators contribute to the maximum towards increasing air-pollution.

Every country has several metropolitan cities which has a huge population with millions of needs. On the global arena, pollution has resulted in the increase of the global temperature by several degrees since 1990. Carbon Dioxide, Methane, and Nitrous Oxide can also be termed as green-house gases. These gases are widely responsible for global warming.

Greenhouse Gases and Emissions By Robert A. Rohde [CC-BY-SA-3.0-migrated (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons
Greenhouse Gases and Emissions By Robert A. Rohde [CC-BY-SA-3.0-migrated (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

Global warming is a term which is quite commonly known to the modern world today but whose effects will wipe out the world which would shape up tomorrow. Cities with major pollution causing statistics are Delhi, New York, Tokyo and Paris. There are several other big names which can be added to this list as well.

Pollution vs India

India is a fast growing democracy and it has several numerical attached to its developing Sensex line. This news might sound too pleasing to an ear which is inclined towards financial growth but it might be equally dreadful news for the one inclined towards global protection and pollution. This is mainly because increase in development increases industries which in turn contribute on a large scale for increasing pollution content.

Several cases of asthma and other respiratory disorders have been registered in India. It is believed that two out of every seven people living in metropolitan cities are affected by air pollution. The major reason for this alarming increase is the negligence among residents and citizens of the country. Fuel based vehicles is another major factor which contributes exponentially to the growing rate of pollution in the country.

India’s Pollution Trivia

City/station
PM 2.5
Delhi
153
Patna
149
Gwalior
144
Raipur
134
Ahmedabad
100
Lucknow
96
Firozabad
96
Kanpur
93
Amritsar
92
Ludhiana
91
Allahabad
88
Agra
88
Khanna
88
Most Polluted Cities In The World By WHO(World Health Organization)

Lets view the startling but accurate data given by WHO, assessed through improved measurements and updated technology:

  • The chart for the most polluted cities in India originates from New Delhi leading from the front. This city has a lot of inmates and millions of vehicles which add on to the misery as well. As a result the national capital of the country also serves to be the national pollution capital as well.
  • Following Delhi on this graph in a descending order are cities of Patna, Gwalior and Raipur. All these cities have industrial expertise in common between them. Hence the emission from these plants raises numeric on pollution management table.
  • Following these cities are the densely populated terrains of Ahmedabad, Lucknow and Firozabad.
  • Towards the tail of this list lie Amritsar, Ludhiana, Allahabad and Agra. These cities have the element of pollution on their user manual because of increased tourism services offered here.

Serious Woes of the “Delhi-Ites”

The citizens of India have their proud capital in New Delhi. This city is the heart of the nation as it is the face of the country on the global arena. Trades and commerce flourish in this city and every VIP in the central services is stationed here. With so much of facts backing the place there has been a significant damage done by increasing pollution on the image of this city. Recognized as one of the most polluted cities in world, Delhi is slowly inching towards the tagline of being the city with a dark sky! Sadly this fact has affected several kids and people of this city. Diseases in the respiratory tract are on an alarming high and the reasons stand clear in lime-light. Vehicles in this city are of the same number as the number of people here. This along with the factories stationed here has caused a significant rise in the pollution levels.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Air pollution of DelhiTraffic chaos at Chandni Chowk Delhi
Air pollution of Delhi
Air pollution of Delhi | Source
Traffic chaos at Chandni Chowk Delhi
Traffic chaos at Chandni Chowk Delhi | Source

1. Would you prefer travelling to office in public transport if it is within reachable limits?

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Apart from these reasons another major reason for increase in pollution is the yards situated in cities where industrial waste and rubber is burnt. The chemicals released due to this have wiped out traces of clean air from the vicinity of the national capital.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
A boy winces at the smoke rising from the computer motherboards being melted over open fires in a recycling yard in Delhi.Workers use cleavers for extracting metal parts from used capacitors. Delhi
A boy winces at the smoke rising from the computer motherboards being melted over open fires in a recycling yard in Delhi.
A boy winces at the smoke rising from the computer motherboards being melted over open fires in a recycling yard in Delhi. | Source
Workers use cleavers for extracting metal parts from used capacitors. Delhi
Workers use cleavers for extracting metal parts from used capacitors. Delhi | Source

Air Quality Index Its Health Effects And Cautionary Statement

Air Quality Index  (AQI)
PM2.5   Health Effects Statement
PM 2.5 Cautionary Statement
Good (0-50)
PM2.5 air pollution poses little or no risk.
None
Moderate (51-100)
Unusually sensitive individuals may experience respiratory symptoms.
Unusually sensitive people should consider reducing prolonged or heavy exertion.
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups (101-150)
Increasing likelihood of respiratory symptoms in sensitive individuals, aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly.
People with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion.
Unhealthy (151-200)
Increased aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly; increased respiratory effects in general population.
People with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion; everyone else should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion.
Very Unhealthy (201-300)
Significant aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly; significant increase in respiratory effects in general population.
People with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children should avoid all physical activity outdoors. everyone else should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion.
Hazardous (301-500)
Serious aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly; serious risk of respiratory effects in general population.
Everyone should avoid all physical activity outdoors; people with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children should remain indoors and keep activity levels low.
Air Quality Parameters by New Delhi US Embassy | Res newdelhi.usembassy.gov/airqualitydataemb.html

A Red Alert Signal For Delhi : View The Table For Air Quality Parameters Shared By New Delhi US Embassy. Getting Worse By The Day And Heading For Disaster

Battling Pollution

  • People must understand that only a collective effort from their side along with the support of government can solve this issue.
  • Public transport must be used at all possible instances and unnecessary use of fuel powered vehicles must be avoided.
  • Industries must install filters at their chimney nozzles. These filters must be specifically designed to separate hazardous elements from the exhaust.
  • Smokers must restrict to specified locations and not pollute public environments.
  • Trees must be planted as these nature’s tall ones purify air and keep global warming under control.

Will you buy higher star rated and eco-friendly air conditioners and refrigerators despite them being little extra priced?

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    • readerssquare profile image
      Author

      Readers Square 2 years ago from Punjab, India

      @Dr Faseel

      Dr Faseel, Thank you for the appreciation. The only motive behind writing this article was to remind people about the serious situation we are in. It is time to act and take serious measures, if we take this situation casually there will be no future.

      @Tanisha

      Well said. It is really nice to see this article influencing people. Thank you for sharing your views.

    • readerssquare profile image
      Author

      Readers Square 2 years ago from Punjab, India

      @Goodpal

      Yes, it is noble thought but not possible in India. I strongly feel that government should have more strict rule on vehicle maintenance.

    • Goodpal profile image

      Goodpal 2 years ago

      Well researched hub! Great to find a serious researcher here.

      Shouldn't India ban sale of private vehicles in 4 biggest metros? GDP and car auto-companies would suffer, but will be good for people and their health.

    • profile image

      Dr Faseel 3 years ago

      A very relevant article in the current day scenario where government has only taken baby steps to just measure the problem - I hope they actually do something about it. They have been measuring it and collating data for a while now and the article is a strong reminder to urge both our government and people to take urgent action to tackle the problem.Like the author pointed out the health issues - children are dying from poisonous smog and planes unable to land due to do poor visibility.Not sure what the government is waiting for. Once again hats off to the author of this article.

    • profile image

      Tanisha 3 years ago

      Startling facts that really should create a stir in our society and its high time we take measures to decrease air pollution like the well -developed countries....its our birth right to breathe fresh air!

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