Air Pollution /Smog
The Unites States is one of the worlds leading producers of air pollution. Americans constitute less than 5% of the world’s population, and yet produce about 25% of the world’s CO2.
Motor vehicle emissions are one of the principal causes of air pollution. Oil refineries are another principal pollution source. Photochemical smog is a type of air pollution that comes from vehicular emissions created by vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE). These primary pollutants, with sunlight as a catalyst, produce a mixture of hundreds of hazardous chemicals, forming secondary pollutants. Photochemical smog forms the harmful ground level ozone. Ground level ozone negatively affects our health, our forests, our vegetation, and our ecosystem and, is a contributor to global warming.
Photochemical smog is present in major cities but is most common in cities with a large number of ICE motor vehicles and sunny, warm, dry climates. Smog travels with the wind and thus affects sparsely populated areas as well. It worsens when the weather is warmer and sunnier and makes the upper air warm enough to inhibit circulation; it is especially common in geologic basins encircled by hills or mountains.
Air pollution is one of the most serious threats to our national parks. Dirty air darkens the horizon and ruins scenic views; it damages plants, harms wildlife and even affects the health of visitors.
Measures have been taken globally to reduce the creation of photochemical smog. Tight vehicle emission regulations are one such step. The chart below may help you determine if your driving habits are contributing to the production of photochemical smog.
|Emissions and Fuel Cost for a 100-Mile Trip|
|Greenhouse Gas Emissions
(pounds of CO2 equivalent)
|Total Fuel Cost
|Conventional||75 lb CO2||$9.36|
|Hybrid Electric||52 lb CO2||$6.46|
|Plug-in Hybrid Electric||44 lb CO2||$4.84|
|All-Electric||32 lb CO2||$2.40|
Take Action to make change and save what we can for future generations. Below is just a small record of endangered places deteriorating day by day.