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Air Pollution

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Ms. Farrell

on 15 April 2015

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Transcript of Air Pollution

Air Pollution
Air Pollution
"The introduction of chemicals, particualte matter, or microorganisms into the atmosphere at concentrations high enough to harm plants, animals, and materials or alter ecosystems"
Photochemical smog continued
"EPA says Half of the United States Is Breathing Excessive Levels of Smog"
Pollution Control
All about "O" three
Can occur naturally or be anthropogenic
Atmosphere is a global system
A "commons"
Photochemical Oxidants

Particulate Matter
Carbon Oxides
Nitrogen Oxides
Sulfur Dioxide
The Big Six
Comes from coal and oil
respiratory irritant
exacerbates asthma
acid rain
Natural sources:
Forest Fires
Because they can either be nitrogen oxide NO or nitrogen dioxide NO2
NO: colorless and ordorless
NO2: pungent, reddish-brown gas
Fossil fuels are the most common source
Natural sources:
forest fires, lightning, microbial action in soil
**Plays a role in forming tropospheric ozone and photochemical smog and acid rain**
CO: colorless, odorless gas
formed during incomplete combustion of most matter
CO2: colorless, odorless gas.
Formed during complete combustion
Better than CO for human health
Interferes with O2 transport in the blood
low concentration: headache
high concentration: death
Greenhouse gas, increases earth's global temp
solid or liquids suspended in the air
range in size from .01 micrometers to 100 micrometers
PM-10 (less than 10 micrometers cause most concern
Not filtered out by the nose
deposits into the lungs
usually made up of more toxic chemicals
cans cause "haze" or reduced visibility
Oxides: remove electrons from other compounds
Sunlight + NOx --> photochemical oxidants (O3)
harmful to plant tissue, human respiratory tissue, and construction material
Ozone: O3, well known photochemical oxidant
O3 + Particulate Matter --> Smog
Smog = smoke + fog
2 types of smog:
photochemical smog (Los Angeles-type or Brown)
dominated by oxidants
sulfurous smog (london-type or gray)
sulfur compounds
use to be added to gas to improve performance
The Clean Air Act
Like the clean water act, regulates how much of certain pollutants could be in the atmosphere
Called National Ambient Air Quality Standards or (NAAQS)
Not so much of a problem anymore as we don't add lead to gas
Hence- "unleaded"
~June 2010
Control of Sulfur and Nitrogen Oxide
Fluidized bed combustion:
burning coal close to CaCO3
Sulfur is absorbed
CaCO3 + Sulfur --> sheetrock
Clean Air Act
buying and selling allowances
each year, allowances reduced
1982 (26 million tons)
2008 (11.4 million tons)
Free market determines cheapest way of controlling sulfur emissions
1975, all cars to contain a catalytic converter
Contain platinum and palladium
The reason for no Lead in gas
Reduces NOx and CO emissions
Control of Smog
Drastic measures:
Suburbs and wood-burning stoves
lighter fluids and barbeques
California and Bakeries
Reduce VOCs
more O3, but less Photochemical oxidents
Cars (emit NOx and VOCs):
Mexico city license plates
2008 Beijing Olympics
improved public transportation
shut down industry
Do The Math
Given the data presented below for total SO2 emission reductions in the United States, calculate the total percentage reduction and the annual percentage reduction of SO2 emissions
26 million tons in 1982
11.4 million tons in 2008
Formation and Breakdown of Stratospheric Ozone
Anthropogenic Contributions to Ozone Destruction
Efforts to Reduce Ozone Depletion
1. UV-C breaks bonds holding together O2
Creates two "O" molecules
O2 + UV-C --> 2O
2. Oxygen reacts with free oxygen atoms
O2 + O --> O3
3. Ozone breaks down into O2 and Free Oxygen when absorbing UV-C and UV-B
O3 + UV-B/UV-C -->O2 + O
4. Those products may again form O3
Chlorine the Ozone killer
chloroflourocarbons (CFCs)
CFCs were ideal for many purposes:
air conditioning
aerosol cans (propellant)
"blowing agent" (inject air into Styrofoam)
CFCs are:
extremely stable
In the Stratosphere:
1. UV breaks the Chlorine Free
2. The Ozone reacts
O3 + Cl --> ClO + O2
3. A free oxygen atom reacts with ClO
O + ClO --> Cl + O2
4. Chlorine is once again produces, so it can continue to break down ozone without changing or getting "used up"
mid-1980s, researchers noticed ozone depletion, starting in 1979
Decreased O3 means Increased UV radiation hitting earth
Case-study of problem solving
1986, many nations meet in Montreal
success seemed unlikely
economically staggering
debate over CFCs role in O3 depletion
Surprisingly, 27 nations signed Motreal Protocol
50% reduction of ozone depleting compounds by the year 2000
Crisis Averted
Indoor Air Pollution
developing countries
developed countries
wood, animal manure, coal as energy sources
little to no ventilation in the home
1.6 million deaths per year
56% of those are under 5 years old
People in developing countries spend much more time indoors
homes are more insulated
plastic and petroleum -based products give off chemical vapors
Carbon Monoxide
VOCs in Home Products
Sick Building Syndrome
Long, thin, fibrous silicate mineral
Found in insulation material
steam & hot water pipes
Shingles & siding on buildings
Exposure can cause lung cancer
malfunctioning of exhaust systems from household heaters
Usually Natural Gas
CO binds with hemoglobin in the body
Can cause death
Naturally occuring radioactive gas
Most common source is from granite
Might want to rethink those granite counter tops...
water in contact from underlying rocks
through cracks in the foundation
Radon can attach to dust particles and be inhaled
21,000 people die every year from radon causing lung cancer
second leading cause of lung cancer aside from cigarette smoking
Best ways to prevent it:
seal cracks in the basement
improve ventilation in the home
Many VOCs are found in building materials
Worst of the worst: Formaldehyde
Found in particle board and carpeting glue
It's that nice "new home" or "new car smell"
can cause eye & throat irritations
also a suspected carcinogen
To prevent heating and cooling costs, buildings have become more and more insulated
Causes a build up of toxins and pollutants in an airtight space
Sick Building Syndrome: a general terms for the maladies associated with new, insulated buildings
throat or eye irritation
EPAs four causes:
inadequate ventilation
chemical contamination from
Outdoor sources
Vehicle exaust
Biological contamination
Pollen and Mold
cleaning agents
copy machines
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