Mechanism of Adverse Impact of Smoke Pollutant:
The main sources of smoke pollutants in urban areas are Petrol / Diesel driven motor vehicles, Fuel combustion in stationary sources including residential, commercial and industrial heating / cooling system and coal-burning power plants etc.
Petrol / Diesel driven motor vehicles produce high levels of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) / Carbon Monoxide (CO), major source of Hydrocarbon (HC) and Nitrogen oxides (NOx). Fuel combustion in stationary sources is the dominant source of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) and Sulfur Dioxide (SO2).
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) – This is one of the major gas pollutants in the atmosphere. Major sources of CO2 are due to burning of fossil fuels and deforestation. Industrially developed countries like
As ocean water contain about 60 times more CO2 than atmosphere; CO2 released by the industry leads to disturbance of equilibrium of concentration of CO2 in the system. In such a scenario, the oceans would absorb more and more CO2 and atmosphere would also remain excess of CO2. As water warms, ocean’s ability to absorb CO2 is reduced. CO2 is a good transmitter of sunlight, but partially restricts infrared radiation going back from the earth into space. This produces the so-called “Greenhouse Effect” that prevents a drastic cooling of the Earth during the night. This so-called “Greenhouse Effect” is responsible for GLOBAL WARMING. Currently Carbon Dioxide is responsible for major portion of the global warming trend.
Nitrogen oxides (NOx) - They come mainly from nitrogen based fertilizers, deforestation, and biomass burning. Nitrogen oxides contribute mostly as atmospheric contaminants. These gases are responsible in the formation of both acid precipitation and photochemical smog and causes nitrogen loading. These gases have a role in reducing stratospheric ozone.
Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) - Sulfur dioxide is produced by combustion of sulfur-containing fuels, such as coal and fuel oils. SO2 also produced in the process of producing Sulfuric Acid and in metallurgical process involving ores that contain sulfur. Sulfur oxides can injure man, plants and materials. As emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitric oxide from stationary sources are transported long distances by winds, they form secondary pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide, nitric acid vapor, and droplets containing solutions of sulfuric acid, sulfate, and nitrate salts. These chemicals descend to the earth's surface in wet form as rain or snow and in dry form as a gases fog, dew, or solid particles. This is known as acid deposition or acid rain.
Choloroflurocarbons (CFCs) - Chlorofluorocarbons, also known as Freons, are greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. CFCs are responsible for lowering the average concentration of ozone in the stratosphere.