Air Pollution


Air Pollution

Tiffany Dixon

Dr. Collado

SOW 200 Social Problems

Union Institute University

August 18, 2009

          Air pollution is a problem that we have noticed since the industrial revolution, when trees, houses and cars were covered in soot from the factories. People demand change; then, just as they are demanding it now. With all the talk of acid rain, global warming and ozone depletion it seems hopeless, but it isn’t. Everyone can make a difference. After reading this you will understand the causes, effects and possible solution to the problems of acid rain, global warming and depletion. You will that things are bad but not hopeless.
          Pollution is changing the earth's atmosphere so that it lets in more harmful radiation from the sun. At the same time, our polluted atmosphere is becoming a better insulator, preventing heat from escaping back into space and leading to a rise in global average temperatures. Scientists predict that the temperature increase, referred to as global warming, will affect world food supply, alter sea level, make weather more extreme, and increase the spread of tropical disease. (D. Stanley Eitzen, 2008)
          Most air pollution comes from one human activity: burning fossil fuels, natural gas, coal, and oil to power industrial processes and motor vehicles. Among the harmful chemical compounds this burning puts into the atmosphere are carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, and tiny solid particles including lead from gasoline additives called particulates. Between 1900 and 1970, motor vehicle use rapidly expanded, and emissions of nitrogen oxides, some of the most damaging pollutants in vehicle exhaust, increased 690 percent. (D. Stanley Eitzen, 2008) When fuels are incompletely burned, various chemicals called volatile organic chemicals also enter the air. Pollutants also come from other sources. For instance, decomposing garbage in landfills...