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5 Examples of Air Pollution That Are Often Found Around Us

Hyundai Motorstudio Senayan Park 2022.07.15
5 Examples of Air Pollution That Are Often Found Around Us

When talking about examples of air pollution, our minds will immediately imagine thick smoke coming out of exhaust fumes or factory chimneys. However, it turns out that this is not the only example of air pollution.

Out there, there are many other examples of air pollution that cause serious impacts on planet earth. If air pollution continues to increase, climate change or global warming will become a serious threat.

Therefore, it is very important for us to study what are examples of air pollution in order to reduce the impact of air pollution.

Examples of Air Pollution

Air pollution is visible and invisible. Smog from forest fires is an example of visible air pollution. Meanwhile, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, and carbon monoxide are types or examples of invisible air pollution.

Let's look at some examples of air pollution that are commonly found around the following environment:

1. Vehicle Exhaust Smoke

The number one source of air pollution in the surrounding environment is exhaust fumes. This example of air pollution releases high levels of toxic chemicals such as carbon monoxide.

This is why, it is highly recommended to use an electric car that is more environmentally friendly. Electric cars use battery power and do not use fossil fuels. Thus, releasing less toxic carbon emissions and even 0% carbon emissions into the surrounding environment.

2. Petroleum Power Plant Smoke

In addition to exhaust fumes, smoke from burning petroleum in power plants is an example of air pollution of concern. Chemicals such as sulfur oxides released during the combustion process go directly into the atmosphere.

If the sulfur oxide mixes with rainwater, acid rain will occur. That is why environmentally friendly fuels such as solar, wind and nuclear need to be explored in more detail. Because it can be environmentally friendly alternative fuels in power plants.

3. Factory Smoke

Another example of air pollution is: factory smoke . Almost like vehicle exhaust fumes, factory smoke on a large scale every day releases pollutants into the air.

Around the world, factory fumes spread toxic chemicals into the air. If allowed to continue, the factory smoke will pollute the air which results in increasing global warming.

4. Ammonia Gas from Livestock and Agriculture

Every day, livestock manure releases ammonia gas which is one of the most dangerous gases in the environment. Not only animal husbandry, agricultural activities are the same.

There are many toxic chemicals that enter the atmosphere from the use of pesticides or chemical fertilizers.

5. Volcano Smoke

Next, examples of air pollution are from natural phenomena, such as volcanic smoke, forest fires, and dust storms. Natural events that occur on earth are one of the causes of air pollution that have an impact on the surrounding environment.

Volcanic smoke or forest fire smoke can cause ARI (Upper Respiratory Tract Infection) disease.

6. Cigarette Smoke

Do not forget, in addition to examples of air pollution that occurs in the wild, there are also examples of air pollution in our own homes. Examples such as cigarette smoke or cigar smoke. Smoking activity releases toxic chemicals that are harmful if inhaled, especially children or people with a history of respiratory disease.

In addition to cigarette smoke, examples of air pollution at home such as the use of chemicals, especially bleach for clothes. So, even though the example of air pollution in the house seems trivial, don't ignore it because it has an impact on our health.

Types of Air Pollution

After understanding examples of common air pollution, we will now learn about what types of air pollution are commonly experienced in urban areas and their harmful effects on the environment.

1. Ozone (O3)

Ground-level ozone comes from hazardous industrial chemicals and the burning of petroleum or coal. In urban areas, ground level ozone from the industrial sector reacts with sunlight.

This is why ozone levels tend to be higher and more dangerous in the summer.

2. Nitrogen Oxide (NOx)

Another dangerous type of urban air pollution is a group of gases known as nitrogen oxides. Both are highly reactive and odorless. The main sources or producers of nitrogen oxides are vehicles, petroleum power plants, and forms of burning fossil fuels.

3. Carbon Monoxide (CO)

Carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, but very toxic. Carbon monoxide often causes gas poisoning when inhaled indoors or outdoors.

Usually, it is produced by vehicle fumes, industrial engine fumes, and the combustion of petroleum and coal.

4. Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)

Have you ever walked on the edge of a busy highway? Trucks or buses often emit exhaust fumes and are inhaled by pedestrians or passing motorists.

This smoke contains sulfur dioxide or sulfur dioxide (SO2). Usually, in urban areas, sulfur dioxide comes from burning diesel fuel from diesel-engined vehicles. Sulfur dioxide gas will then react in the air to form micro-particles which in large quantities become smog.

However, sulfur dioxide can also be produced from natural events such as smoke from an erupting volcano.

5. Particulate Matter (PM10 and PM2.5)

If you live in an urban area, you may have seen a layer of gray fog covering most of the clouds. In fact, in the capital city of Jakarta, sometimes it is difficult to see the stars clearly at night because of the very dense air pollution.

This fog occurs when there is a high concentration of particulate matter (PM) in the air. There are PM10 and PM2.5.

  • PM10 : Particles less than or equal to 10 micrometers in diameter. Examples include dust, pollen, and mold.
  • PM2.5 : Fine particles less than or equal to 2.5 micrometers in diameter. Or, in other words, the size of 1/30 of a hair (too small for the eye). Very dangerous if inhaled and enters the lungs.

Urban environments such as construction sites, factory chimneys, and unpaved roads can release micro-particles such as dust, smoke and soot that are blown by the wind.

How to Protect Yourself From the Impact of Air Pollution

There are simple solutions to protect yourself from air pollution or air pollution. Among them:

  • Reduce outdoor activities.
  • Continue to monitor the air quality analysis in the city where you live.
  • Wear the mask properly to block out dust and other micro-particles.

Thus our review of some examples of air pollution that is commonly found in urban areas and around the environment. By studying these examples of air pollution, we can raise awareness of the importance of the quality of the clean air we breathe every day.