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Causes of Air Pollution | The Impact of Air Pollution

4691 words (19 pages) Essay in Environmental Sciences

02/06/17 Environmental Sciences Reference this

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Air pollution is the chemical, particulate, and biological matter that can harm or distress human, living organism, or the natural environment into the atmosphere. In this project, the researcher team studied the causes and effects of the air pollution in the United Arab Emirates and discovered and will discuss the main causes of the pollution and their effects on the environment. Also, some statistics about the percentage of air pollution will be discussed from previous studies in the UAE such as governmental and private statistical data. In addition, solution for protecting the air pollution will be studied in order to have better environment to live in. Additionally, the team will discuss a case study regarding the effects of air pollution in UAE.

The goal of the project is to study the cause of the air pollution in UAE and how it can affect the environment. Also, the next goal is to give some solutions that can save the environment and give some awareness in protecting the air pollution.

In the past fifty years, UAE had an excessive development in many fields such as buildings, industries, and transportation after oil discovering. Due to the increases of the projects, the air starts getting many pollutants such as dusts, Chemical gases, Carbon Dioxide emissions which led to an increase in the air pollution. Statistics show that the United Arab Emirates is the fourth highest country in Carbon Dioxide emissions between the Arab countries and 32 all over the world. The steady increase in the air pollution can affect the humanity in the short term and long term such as Acid rain and health problem which lead to study the pollution in the region.

Limitation

In this project, the research team will study the air pollution in the UAE and will not go further to Middle East or the world due to time limitation and amount of work that have been done for the topic. The time period of the research topic will be for the last five years. It is just the industry and civilization has been spread widely in UAE at this period which will be enough for the research time. In addition, the research team will get from previous studies and statistics about air pollution in UAE due to shortage in resources and equipment for the topic.

Review of the Literature

History of air pollution in UAE

The problem relates with the air pollution has been in the UAE since 1958 after discovering the oil field in Abu Dhabi and another one in Dubai 1966. The problem of air pollution start increase steadily after the first industry came in Abu Dhabi 1966 then another one in the Al Ain and Sharjah in 1969.there is many industries can affect enormously in the region. According to the Ministry of Environment and Water in UAE, 6 Industries produced different dangerous chemical organic, 9 industries produces cements which can also affect the air and 2 other industries has been shut down due to violent in regulation and the gas emission. There are now 3593 Industries in UAE as you can see in table below. The most industries are in Jabel Ali Free Zone and the Sharjah Industrial Areas.

Cities

Abu Dhabi

Dubai

Sharjah

Ajman

Um Al Quwain

RAK

Fujairah

Total

No of Industries

409

1491

874

493

53

212

61

3593

Percentage

11.38%

41.50%

24.33%

13.72%

1.48%

5.90%

1.70%

100.00%

Table : Number of Industries in UAE (UAE Export and Indusry directly, 2010)

The number of cars has been increased dramatically for the last 20 years the statistics below show the number of increase in cars in 2009 in Dubai.

Type of car

Light Vehicles

Heavy Vehicles

Light Bus

Heavy Bus

Light Mechanical Vehicles

Heavy Mechanical Vehicle

Motorcycle

Leisure Motorcycle

Vehicle for disable

TOTAL

Number of car

837765

55768

25782

22317

7671

18714

17844

15

4

1021879

Table : Number of car in Dubai 2009 (Dubai statistical centre, 2009)

There are really a huge problem with the huge increment of the cars which really cause a huge traffic because statistics show UAE is one of the highest countries in the traffic especially in Dubai and Sharjah which can cause really a huge problem such as the car air pollution. Studies showed that 80% from the air pollution in Dubai came from the emissions of gases from cars.

There were many ways to think and start of protecting air pollution. In 1993, Dubai Municipality started putting some of the air quality stations system to protect the gas emissions in the city. Also, in 1993, UAE Federal government imposed some laws in order to prevent the air pollution. As we can see today there are many government organization and many laws that control the area such UAE air control monitoring laws.

Causes and effects of air pollution in UAE:

The first cause is motor vehicles:

Motor vehicles are considered one of the main causes of air pollution, as there is a steady increase in the number of production annually. Moreover, Vehicles have the largest impact on environment. As a result, motor vehicles produce more air pollution. According to statistical report, the population growth was less than the production of motor vehicles, as the population growth was two percent and the motor vehicles production was five percent. In addition, vehicles major cause for air pollution is the static combustion of fossil fuel. Also the smoke produced from the burning of the fuel produces many harmful gases, the main ones are, Carbon monoxide (CO), Nitrogen oxide (NO), and sulfur dioxide (SO2).

Figure : Air Toxic Emissions from on – Road Mobile Source

Carbon monoxide:

Carbon monoxide is a toxic colorless gas which is emitted from the tail pipe of the car. The reason behind emission such gas into the environment is either the lack of maintained of the vehicle, such as, broken air bumps and dirty filters, or the incomplete combustion of the fuel.

Effects:

CO toxicity is one of the most fatal air poisoning around the world. Although it is tasteless and colorless, it is high in toxicity. This is because; it combines with hemoglobin forming carboxyhemogoblin, which decreases the efficiency of red blood cells to transfer oxygen to body tissues. Moreover, this process is known as anoxemia. Additionally, small concentrations such as 677 ppm (parts per million) can cause the conversion of more than fifty percent of the body’s hemoglobin to carboxyhemoglobin , which can cause seizure, coma, and fatality. The most common signs of poisoning are such as headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, fatigue and a feeling of weakness. Also, it can affect the nervous system, as it can cause confusion, disorientation, visual disturbance, syncope and seizures. Further, it can cause the damage to the heart and the fetus of the pregnant women.

Nitrogen Oxide:

Nitrogen oxide is one of the most toxic gases which can be produced from the car engines, incomplete combustion of fossil fuel and fertilizers.

Effects:

The Nitrogen oxides can help in the formation of the acid rain, it is a major factor in global warming, it slows down the growth of plants, it can react with other pollutants; thus, forming more toxic chemicals. Nitrogen oxides effects are nausea, irritated eyes and nose, fluid forming in lungs and tininess of breath. Furthermore, inhaling large amount of Nitrogen oxides can lead to rapid, burning seizure; inflammation of throat; reduced oxygen ingestion; a larger buildup of fluids in lungs; thus death. Nitrogen oxides can interact with aerosols which can cause enormous respiratory problems. As well, Nitrogen oxides can lead to permanent visual impairment in the area affected by it.

Sulfur dioxide:

Sulfur dioxide is a chemical compound which has the formula of SO2, it is produced when coal and fuel is burned, as fuel and sulfur contains sulfur compounds.

Effects:

The sulphur dioxide is very dangerous, as it causes breathing problems, such as, alteration in the lung’s defences, deterioration in respiratory system and cardiovascular disease. As well, Ones who suffer from asthma, chronic lung and heart disease are the largely sensitive to SO2. Additionally, it can lead to the damage of trees and crops. SO2, by the side of nitrogen oxides, are the major pioneers in formation of acid rain, which causes the acidification of lakes and streams, speed up the corrosion of buildings and reduced visibility. SO2 also contributes in climate change.

The second cause is volatile organic compounds:

Volatile organic compounds are organic materials that have significant vapor pressure; as a result, it is easy for these organic compounds to evaporate quickly at a very low temperature. Further, some of these gases are considered dangerous on human’s health, the environment and the ozone layer. Additionally, the major sources for the VOC are paints, coatings, Chlorofluorocarbons and chlorocarbons.

Painting and coatings used in doors emit ethyl acetate, glycol ethers, and acetone, which are very harmful to the human beings health. Additionally, chlorofluorocarbons and chlorocarbons, they are widely used in dry cleaning and the production of fossil fuel.

Effects:

Certain kinds of VOC’s, such as styrene and limonene, can go on with a react ion with nitrogen oxides, or with ozone; thus, producing new oxidation products. Moreover, it can produce secondary aerosols, which can lead to sensory irritation symptoms. What is more, it can cause eye, nose and throat irritation, headaches, loss of coordination and nausea, damage to liver, kidney, and central nervous system. Additionally, it can lead to cancer in animals and cancer in humans.

The third cause is Deforestation:

Deforestation is the removal of forest or a group of tress and then the land is converted to non forest use. There are many reasons regarding deforestation, such as, Urban and Construction Purposes, as they use the wood obtained from trees for building materials, furniture, and paper products. Moreover, Forests are also removed to provide accommodation for escalating urban areas. Furthermore, Forests are removed so that to clear land for growing crops and for grazing cattle. Additionally, trees are used as a source of fuel, as they are converted to charcoal in order to be used in cooking and heating purposes.

Effects:

Erosion of soil: as the forests are removed, the soil is countenancing the sun, causing dryness to the soil and losing its nutrients. As a result, it will be impossible to cultivate again.

Disruption of the Water Cycle: trees helps maintaining the balance of water in the ecosystem, as the trees are removed, the weather gets drier and unhealthy.

Flooding and Drought: One of the vital functions of forests is to absorb and store great amounts of water quickly when there are heavy rains. When forests are cut down, this regulation of the flow of water is disrupted, which leads to alternating periods of flood and then drought in the affected area.

Climate Change: It is well known that global warming is being caused largely due to emissions of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. However, what is not known quite as well is that deforestation has a direction association with carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere. Trees act as a major storage depot for carbon, since they absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which is then used to produce carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that make up trees. When deforestation occurs, many of the trees are burnt or they are allowed to rot, which results in releasing the carbon that is stored in them as carbon dioxide. This, in turn, leads to greater concentrations of carbon.

Case study of air Pollution in UAE

A case study had been conducted to study the burden of diseases in UAE in long and short terms. There study the Impact of the Particulate Matter (PM) and Ozone (O3) in ambient air and how it going to affect people in the region. The World Health Organization defined that the total death due to Particulate Matter was 200, but didn’t report the diseases due to other air pollutants. As results, theses study has been conducted in order to clarify the number disease due to other pollutant. Other status that relate to some effect to people by air such as smoking habit, health care statues, working and living environment are not considered. Firstly, the researcher of this study studied the PM and O3 in UAE as shown in the next two figures.

Figure : A contour map show PM concentration in UAE

Figure : A contour map show O3 concentration in UAE

The next part of the study was to see number of death people in the region due to the between 545 (542 adults and 3 children) has diseases from PM, 209 (208 adults and 1 children) has a dead from it and 162 death from the O3 effects over the past 30 year the next two figures show the percentage of death including some uncertainties.

Figure : chart show causes and death by PM

Figure : chart show causes and death by O3

Method and discussion:

As the research is limited to UAE region, the group was going to allocate sources related to the UAE region.

The sources was books, online books, journals and online journals, as the group located some books that discuss the air pollution problems: such as, the major causes of air pollution in UAE and the effects of these causes on the UAE residents. In addition, some of the article had been seen some of the cause and effect in UAE. Also, the researcher team searched and found of some of the air pollution that affected the region. As allocation of credible evidence to the problem is required, the team searched for statistical data such as Chemical element emissions in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

After the group finishes the causes and effects of air pollution allocation, we will suggest solutions that can be implemented for better future and healthier generations. The following table showed that amount of work we did in the Multidisciplinary Projects. In addition, the project chart flow has been included by PRIMAVERA to be more a lear image of the duration of the project which Start from October 13th, 2010 and finished at January 16th, 2011 with total of 98 days.

Duration (Days)

Activity Description

Early Start

Early Finish

Late Start

Late Finish

6

Making the Tasks

13-Oct-10

20-Oct-10

13-Oct-10

20-Oct-10

10

Background of the Topic

21-Oct-10

3-Nov-10

21-Oct-10

3-Nov-10

8

Time Limitation

4-Nov-10

15-Nov-10

4-Nov-10

15-Nov-10

18

Study Cause of Air pollution in UAE

21-Nov-10

14-Dec-10

21-Nov-10

14-Dec-10

18

Case Studies

21-Nov-10

14-Dec-10

28-Nov-10

21-Dec-10

20

Study Effect of Air pollution in UAE

21-Nov-10

16-Dec-10

21-Nov-10

16-Dec-10

10

Statistical Data

22-Dec-10

4-Jan-11

22-Dec-10

4-Jan-11

5

Making Recommendation

5-Jan-11

11-Jan-11

5-Jan-11

11-Jan-11

3

Making Written and Oral Presentation

12-Jan-11

16-Jan-11

12-Jan-11

16-Jan-11

Table : Timeline of the Scheule

Figure : A flow Chart of the Project

Results

In order to know the quality of air in the UAE, statistical data about the amounts of pollutants emissions was retrieved for analysis. However, working with statistical data raises two problems first is accuracy and second reliability. Since, statistical data are collected from samples, it is very important to have both accurate and reliable data if the results were to be generalized over the whole population. To ensure that our data are as accurate and reliable as possible we used governmental statistics center of Abu Dhabi and Dubai to find our results.

The results found focuses on the emission of three main pollutants which are Carbon monoxide, Sulfur dioxide and Nitrogen dioxide. Moreover, the results cover two main cities in the UAE, Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Since, the research is limited to five years; the results cover the years 2005 to 2009. Because statistical data need time to be gathered and published by the government, the emission results for the year 2010 were not included in the research. Furthermore, the city of Abu Dhabi was divided into three main areas, main city Abu Dhabi, Al-Ain and Western Region. Dubai, on the other hand, was divided into six main areas, which are Diera, Safa, AlKaramah, Mushrif, Jabel Ali Village and Jabel Ali Port.

Analyzing these results will show the exact amounts of pollution in each part, which will help in identifying the areas with the highest pollution levels. Knowing that, the recovery from pollution should be concentrated in these regions. Since, the results cover the last five years; we can know the trends in the emission of pollutants. This helps in identifying the areas were the pollution increases and the rate at which it increases. These results are very important in our research because it focuses our concentration in fewer areas which is more practical. Note that all the pollution levels are found in micrograms per meter cube (mcg/m3) and na means not-available.

Carbon monoxide (CO)

Abu Dhabi – Only available data from 2007 to 2009

2007

2008

2009

Abu Dhabi

5.4

10.5

10.72

Al Ain

5.72

7.9

13.3

Western Region

na

na

na

Table : CO emission in Abu Dhabi

Dubai

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

Deira

1.6

3.4

5.4

9.6

10.9

Safa

1.3

3.6

5.5

8.8

10.8

AlKaramah

1.8

4.2

4.1

1.1

Mushrif

Jabel Ali Village

Jabel Ali Port

Table : CO Emission in Dubai

Sulfur dioxide (SO2)

Abu Dhabi – Only available data from 2007 to 2009

2007

2008

2009

Abu Dhabi

149

173.1

330

Al Ain

86

123.4

31

Western Region

161

124

179

Table : SO2 Emission in Abu Dhabi

Dubai

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

Deira

0.09

0.017

0.027

0.018

0.006

Safa

AlKaramah

Mushrif

Jabel Ali Village

0.022

0.12

0.024

Jabel Ali Port

0.034

0.021

0.019

0.021

Table : SO2 Emission in Dubai

Nitrogen dioxide (NO2)

Abu Dhabi – Only available data from 2007 to 2009

2007

2008

2009

Abu Dhabi

278

187.4

321.0

Al Ain

271

147.2

234

Western Region

192

72.6

289

Table : NO2 Emission in Abu Dhabi

Dubai

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

Deira

0.492

0.302

0.225

0.113

Safa

0.261

0.091

0.319

0.319

0.063

AlKaramah

0.445

0.306

0.091

Mushrif

Jabel Ali Village

0.439

0.306

0.23

0.217

0.067

Jabel Ali Port

0.306

0.306

0.173

0.117

Table : NO2 Emission in Dubai

Conclusions and Recommendations

Conclusions

There is no doubt that air pollution is one of the severe problems that people are facing nowadays and want strongly to get rid of. There is one question that the research team members have asked themselves regularly and the question is “Why have we decided to choose the air pollution topic to be our project to talk about in the English 207 course?” the answer of this question has been clarified and verified due to the importance of the topic and its widespread facts that the world is concerning about these days. Getting the definition, the causes, the effects of the air pollution, the team has already got in love with the topic of air pollution and strongly wanted to write about it and search about it more to know the real facts beyond this topic. The air pollution is a problem including and concerning each individual in this world. During Industry, combustion of engines, burning coal, smoking and emissions of green gasses are exceeding the limits and increasing the percentage of the air pollution. But as far as the EPA has a group that is concerning with its difficult task to help this polluted air from the humanity risk, the air is getting its freshness and cleanness. Don’t you think that it is our mission also to support the EPA group and stop the humanity risk from the air pollution risks, so let’s be one hand combing the seriousness of this topic to avoid the risks on this polluted air to be more worse than this. We cannot say that people can eliminate this issue completely because human’s industry doesn’t finish and his/her greed to get more is increasing day after day disregarding the case of their polluting the air that we are breathing. So, we can minimize this phenomenon by reducing these emissions and polluting factors of the air.

Recommendations

It is a very crucial step to point out that each project has been done, is being done or will be done is ending with some results. These results are either satisfied with the human’s nature or unsatisfied. The project that has been done by our research team shows some results that are unsuitable for the human beings, this environment and also to a very important kind of humanity which is the humanity resources. Nobody can deny that air pollution has severe problems on human’s environment and can perfectly damage human’s life. What is remaining of this damaged environment and this polluted air that we are breathing? People are keeping in resolving their faults and they are in anxiety to keep this environment clean to be proper to live in. In fact, the results of the project are followed by some recommendations created or found by the research team to show how to keep a good humanity environment and having good humanity resources. As it has been shown that most of the natural resources and also humans are affected by the air pollution and this has been shown in this project in the term of effects of air pollution on humanity. The mankind can cause a lot of destruction to himself/herself and can reduce a lot of this destruction he/she has done. It is obligatory and a crucial task for anyone of us to keep this environment clean to live in and to let others live in in a proper way. To reduce these effects on humanity, the research team has done some kind of suggestions and recommendations that could properly reduce the effects of the causes of the air pollution as follows:

*Steps to reduce the level of Carbon Monoxide, Carbon Dioxide, Sulfur Dioxide and other green gasses causing air pollution:

Doing a regular vehicle maintenance and this to reduce the percentage of the Carbon Monoxide and Dioxide coming out of the car’s exhaust.

Reducing the percentage of burning trash and coal which are producing most of the Carbon Dioxide and then affecting the Ozone layer and increasing the percentage of the Acid rain.

Reducing the Green house Gas emissions including water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxides, and other harmful gasses causing the temperature increasing and then the global warming.

Trying hard and putting all efforts to use the clean renewable and non polluting sources.

Getting help from engineers to invent new technologies that are friendly to the environment such as the solar car that is powered and used in many cities nowadays. The solar cars could perfectly decrease the percentage of the emissions of either the Carbon Monoxide or Carbon Dioxide that are produced from millions of regular combustion cars’ engines.

The most important is to stop smoking in order to decrease the Carbon Monoxide in the air.

Also, people can use recycled products in order to decrease the global warming in the world.

Following the EPA rules (Environmental Protection Agency). The EPA has done a lot of steps in the case of reducing the air pollution following the steps shown above. The EPA has proved that the air pollution is still growing by 10% even the steps are followed.

The most important thing that could be done by the human himself/herself is warning people regarding the enormous bad effects of the air pollution. Also, they can give some lectures that advising people to reduce the percentage of the air pollution through some statistically and theoretically useful data, lectures and workshops.

References:

[1]

“Statistical Yearbook of Abu Dhabi 2010,”Statictics centre – Abu Dhabi, January 2011.

[2]

Ying Li et al., “Burden of disease attributed to anthropogenic air pollution in the United Arab Emirates: Estimates based on observed air quality data,”Science of the Total Environment, vol. 408, no. 2010, pp. 5784 – 5793, August 2010.

[3]

(2010, July) UAE Export and Directly. [Online]. HYPERLINK “http://www.uaeexportdirectory.com/en/ResultStat.aspx” http://www.uaeexportdirectory.com/en/ResultStat.aspx

[4]

(2010, December) Air Pollution Indicators at Monitoring Sites – Emirate of Dubai. Pdf File.

[5]

(2010, October) Enviremntal Preotection Agency. [Online]. HYPERLINK “http://www.epa.gov/” http://www.epa.gov/

[6]

(2010, November) Intelligent Life of Deforestation. [Online]. HYPERLINK “http://www.buzzle.com/articles/causes-and-effects-of-deforestation.html” http://www.buzzle.com/articles/causes-and-effects-of-deforestation.html

[7]

(2009, Febraury) Sulphur Dioxide (SO2). [Online]. HYPERLINK “http://www.airqualityontario.com/science/pollutants/sulphur.cfm” http://www.airqualityontario.com/science/pollutants/sulphur.cfm

[8]

(2007, April) Agency for toxic subtances and Diease Registry. [Online]. HYPERLINK “http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/tfacts175.html” http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/tfacts175.html

[9]

(2010, July) Ministry of Enviromental and Water. [Online]. HYPERLINK “http://www.moew.gov.ae/Ar/InformationCenter/Pages/ManufacturesGuide.aspx” http://www.moew.gov.ae/Ar/InformationCenter/Pages/ManufacturesGuide.aspx

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