Air pollutants in the atmosphere

Pollutant and Greenhouse gas An air pollutant is a material in the air that can have adverse effects on humans and the ecosystem.

Air pollutants in the atmosphere

Heat from the earth is trapped in the atmosphere due to high levels of carbon dioxide CO2 and other heat-trapping gases that prohibit it from releasing the heat into space. Roughly half of the greenhouse effect is caused by CO2.

Therefore, trees act as carbon sinks, alleviating Air pollutants in the atmosphere greenhouse effect. On average, one acre of new forest can sequester about 2.

Air pollutants in the atmosphere

Young trees absorb CO2 at a rate of 13 pounds per tree each year. Trees reach their most productive stage of carbon storage at about 10 years at which point they are estimated to absorb 48 pounds of CO2 per year.

At that rate, they release enough oxygen back into the atmosphere to support two human beings. Trees also reduce the greenhouse effect by shading houses and office buildings. This reduces the need for air conditioning by up to 30 percent which in turn reduces the amount of fossil fuels burned to produce electricity.

The combination of CO2 removal from the atmosphere, carbon storage in wood and the cooling effect makes trees extremely efficient tools in fighting the greenhouse effect. Planting trees remains one of the most cost-effective means of drawing excess CO2 from the atmosphere.

If every American family planted one tree, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere would be reduced by one billion pounds annually.

Clean Air Act Overview

This equates to almost 5 percent of the amount that human activity pumps into the atmosphere each year. It is estimated by the U. Forest Service that all the forests in the United States, combined, sequestered approximately million tons of carbon each year from -offsetting approximately 25 percent of human-caused emissions of carbon during that period.

The Worldwatch Institute, in its Reforesting the Earth paper, estimated that the earth needs at least million acres of trees planted just to restore and maintain the productivity of soil and water resources, annually remove million tons of carbon from the atmosphere and meet industrial and fuel wood needs in the third world.

For every ton of new-wood growth, about 1.

Air pollution

Trees also remove other gaseous pollutants through the stomata in the leaf surface by absorbing them with normal air components. Some of the other major air pollutants and their primary sources are: O3 may be brought to Earth by turbulence during severe storms. Also, small amounts are formed by lightning.

Automobile emissions and industrial emissions mix in the air and undergo photochemical reactions in sunlight releasing ozone and another oxidant, peroxyacetylnitrate PAN. Naturally, high concentrations of these two oxidants build up where there are many automobiles.

These are also formed by high temperature combustion when two natural air components are present; nitrogen and oxygen. With trees present, there is up to a 60 percent reduction in street-level particulates.

Studies have shown that in one urban park, tree cover removed 48 pounds of particulates, 9 pounds of nitrogen dioxide, 6 pounds of sulfur dioxide, 0.

It has also been noted that one sugar maple along a roadway removes 60mg cadmium, mg chromium, mg nickel and 5,mg lead from the environment in one growing season.View the full text of the Air District's rules and regulations. What we monitor View up-to-date information for air monitoring locations..

The Environmental Protection Agency manages the national ambient air quality monitoring network. We also measure the levels of a number of atmospheric pollutants. Causes, effects and solutions of air pollution: Air pollution is one such form that refers to the contamination of the air, irrespective of indoors or outside.

A physical, biological or chemical alteration to the air in the atmosphere can be termed as pollution. Air pollution occurs when harmful or excessive quantities of substances including gases, particulates, and biological molecules are introduced into Earth's may cause diseases, allergies and even death to humans; it may also cause harm to other living organisms such as animals and food crops, and may damage the natural or built environment.

Air pollutants in the atmosphere

The emissions reductions have led to dramatic improvements in the quality of the air that we breathe. Between and , national concentrations of air pollutants improved 80 percent for lead, 77 percent for carbon monoxide, 88 percent for sulfur dioxide (1-hour), 56 percent for nitrogen dioxide (annual), and 22 percent for ozone.

Air Pollution: Current and Future Challenges. EPA determined in that emissions of carbon dioxide and other long-lived greenhouse gases that build up in the atmosphere endanger the health and welfare of current and future generations by causing climate change and ocean acidification.

Hazardous air pollutants, also called air toxics.

Cars, Trucks, Buses and Air Pollution | Union of Concerned Scientists