Air Pollution: A Growing Blanket of Smog

12.03.2013 · Posted in Uncategorized

Air pollution has been a prevalent problem dating back to the Romans. Scientists have discovered gases trapped in ice cores that are believed to be from this time period. The increasing pollution from power plants, trucks, cars and even forest fires to name a few pollutants is depleting our fresh air and causing many problems. First off, the ozone layer is being depleted, trapping in heat and causing the earth to warm. This has indirect effects such as the ocean temperatures rising and increased sea levels due to the melting of polar ice caps. Air pollution has also caused many health related issues. A rise in children with Asthma can be linked to air pollution. Respiratory issues continue to rise the more pollutants we put into the air. The pollution also contributes to acid rain which kills crops, hurts ecosystems and pollutes water resources. Many people either do not see the effects of air pollution or do not understand that the problems they face are caused by air pollution.

Fortunately after many events and work by grassroots, the Clean Air Act was passed in 1970. It created regulations for air pollutants and also formed the Environmental Protection Agency which oversees the regulations. The clean air act has set standards for industries and states to meet in order to cut back on the amount of greenhouse gases we are putting into our atmosphere. However this act is not enough. People must take action and change their own behavior. There are several ways of doing so. One is to conserve energy. The less energy we use, the less power plants must work to meet our demand, decreasing pollution. We can also carpool and use sustainable energy resources. Wind and solar power do not create a harmful bi product that pollutes our atmosphere. With continued work, we can create a cleaner and safer environment for ourselves as well as future generations. Below are some links on more information of air pollution and how you can help.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history-archaeology/Air-Pollution-Has-Been-a-Problem-Since-the-Days-of-Ancient-Rome-187936271.html

http://www.epa.gov/air/caa/peg/reduce.html

 

By: Andrew Morahan

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