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Air Pollutants Unveiled: Decoding Health Risks Now



  Nov 10, 2023

Understanding Air Pollutants and Their Health Impacts



1. What are PM 10 and PM 2.5?

PM 10 and PM 2.5 refer to particulate matter with diameters less than 10 microns and 2.5 microns, respectively.
These tiny particles can penetrate deep into the respiratory system, leading to health issues like asthma, heart attacks, and bronchitis. Sources include emissions from factories, vehicles, construction activities, and road dust.

2. How does Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) affect health?

NO2 is produced by burning fuels and is commonly emitted by vehicles and power plants. Short-term exposure can worsen respiratory diseases like asthma, while long-term exposure can contribute to the development of asthma and increase susceptibility to respiratory infections.

3. What is the impact of Ozone (O3) at ground level?

Ground-level Ozone is formed from atmospheric pollutants in the presence of sunlight. It can lead to an increased risk of hospital admissions for COPD and contribute to cardiovascular and respiratory deaths.

4. What are the sources and impacts of Sulphur Dioxide (SO2)?

SO2 primarily comes from the burning of fossil fuels by power plants and other industrial processes. It can harm the cardiovascular system and respiratory health and contributes to the formation of harmful particulate matter.

5. Why is Ammonia (NH3) in the atmosphere concerning?

Ammonia, largely from fertilizer use and livestock waste, contributes to aerosol pollution harmful to human health. It also impacts water quality and can lead to algal blooms and low-oxygen "dead zones" in aquatic environments.

6. What are the health risks associated with Lead (Pb)?

Lead contamination, often from industrial activities, is hazardous, particularly to children. It can lead to severe poisoning, permanent intellectual disability, and behavioral disorders. Even lower levels of exposure can harm multiple body systems.

7. How does Carbon Monoxide (CO) affect human health?

Carbon Monoxide is a toxic gas produced from burning carbon-containing fuels. High levels can lead to unconsciousness or death, and long-term exposure is linked with an increased risk of heart disease.

Understanding these pollutants and their effects is crucial for addressing air quality issues and protecting public health.

SRIRAM’s


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