Air Pollution: Effects of Air Pollution, Solutions to Air Pollution

len Alfred Ajibola - Tue, 12th March, 2019 @ 07:17

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What is Air Pollution?

Air pollution can be defined as the process of contaminating the atmosphere by the introduction of harmful and toxic substances into it. The substances that bring about air pollution are called air pollutants.

Please read on Layers and Composition of the Atmosphere here.

Air pollutants include smoke generated from the burning of petroleum products, coal, wood, rubber and plastics. Other forms of air pollutants are smoke from chimneys, industries and vehicles.

Carbon(II)oxide (CO) is a gaseous pollutant that could lead to suffocation and death in animals when Inhaled.

Sulphur(IV)oxide (SO2) and Nitrogen(IV)oxide (NO2) are also considered as air pollutants. These gases will contribute to the formation of acid rain which will in turn destroy the leaves of plant.

Certain normal processes like respiration, grassland fires and volcanic eruptions will also bring about air pollution.

Note: During respiration, animals breathe out carbon(IV)oxide into the atmosphere. (CO2) is an air pollutant.

Please read on the Basic Characteristics of Life here.

Reports suggest that air pollution kills over 2 millions people annually.


Effects of air pollution

  1. It results to Eutrophication or Hypertrophication; which is a processes that brings about an increased growth of algae in water bodies, ultimately leading to the death of other aquatic organisms present on/in the water.
  2. It brings about the irritation of the eyes, nose and upper respiratory tract.
  3. It can cause cancer of the lungs and heart attacks.
  4. Suffocation and death.
  5. Formation of acid rain and smog.
  6. It can cause the death of aquatic flora and fauna. Please read on the Differences between Plants and Crops here.
  7. Ozone layer depletion.
  8. Global warming.
  9. Green house effect.


Solutions to air pollution

  1. Afforestion (that is, the planting of trees) should be encouraged.
  2. Solar, hydro-power and wind energies should be considered as alternative sources of energy.
  3. Alternatives to petroleum products should be used if possible. For example, hydro and solar could be used to power automobiles.
  4. Vehicular checks and maintenance should be implemented on various roads.
    Please read on Land Mode of Transportation here.
  5. Bush burning and residential burning should be prohibited.
    Please read on Soil Erosion, its Causes and Solutions here.
  6. Industries should be located far away from residential areas.
  7. Solid waste products should be properly recycled and managed.
    Please read on Waste Management, its Causes and Effects.
  8. Use of improved and efficient coal mining techniques.
  9. Improved use of nitrogen fertilizers.


Note: Air pollution is one of the three major types of pollution. The other 2 are:

  • Land or Soil pollution
  • Water pollution

Noise pollution, Light pollution and Radioactive pollution are other types of pollution.

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Alfred Ajibola is a Medical Biochemist, a passionate Academician with over 7 years of experience, a Versatile Writer, a Web Developer, a Cisco Certified Network Associate and a Cisco CyberOps Associate.

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