Air Pollution (Endangered Global Commons)
Natural Air Pollutants
Volcanoessulfur oxides, particulates
Forest FiresCarbon monoxides, carbon dioxide, Nitrogen oxides, particulates
Living PlantsHydrocarbons, pollen
Decaying plantsMethane, hydrogen sulfide
Major Air Pollutants
Carbon MonoxideFrom transportation Causes headache, dizziness, decreased tolerance to exercise Sulfur oxidesCoal fired power plantsAsthma, bronchitis
Nitrogen OxidesTransportation, Coal firedlung irritation, bronchitis
ParticulatesCoal fired power plantsIrritation of respiratory tract, cancer
OxidantsTransportation, coal firedRespiratory irritation, emphysems
Power plants, industry
Components of fossil fuel
Hydrocarbonswhen incompletely burned form: carbon monoxide, unburned hydrocarbons and water
Hydrocarbons when completely burned form: carbon dioxide and water
Contaminants: sulfur---(heated)---Sulfur dioxide and sulfur trioxide
Mineral contaminant---(heated)…Particulates (e.g. lead and mercury)
Nitrogen gas----(heated)…Nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide
Many of the pollutants react with solar energy and water to produce secondary pollutants, for example sulfur dioxide and water form sulfuric acid.
Photochemical smog- unburned hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides from power plants and automobiles react with sunlight to form secondary pollutants: ozone, formaldehyde, PAN. Ozone erodes rubber, irritates the respiratory system and damages plants.
Bag filter at electric power plants remove particulates
Cyclone collector particulate removal- used in smaller industry
Electrostatic precipitator removal of particulates at coal fired electric plants
Spray collector, also called...