7 Million Deaths Globally due to Air Pollution

According to the report by World Health Organization (WHO), a total of almost 7.3 million deaths a year are related to exposure to outdoor and indoor air pollution. Out of this, nearly 90% deaths are reported in low and middle-income countries.

How prepared are we to combat this?

Scrubber: Scrubber is also known as scrubber system. It is used in industries in order to remove health harming materials coming out from industrial exhaust gases prior to their release into the environment.

  • The utilization of scrubber in industries lowers the level of Sulphur dioxide in atmosphere resulting decrease in cardiovascular diseases and acute respiratory infections like asthma and emphysema. The reduction of Sulphur dioxide in the environment also checks acid rain as it (Sulphur dioxide) is main reason for stimulating acid rain.
  • Scrubber solution is also effective in reducing the level of carbon dioxide in atmosphere. Due to this, the threat of global warming, climate change and ocean acidification can be checked.

Catalytic Conversions: It is a process in which emission control devices—catalytic converters—are fitted into the exhaust system in internal combustion engines. The device converts toxic gases of nitrogen oxides into less toxic pollutants benefitting human health and environment.

  • Nitrogen oxide is responsible for causing diseases related to lung and respiration. Moreover, long term exposure to nitrogen oxide can cause genetic mutations, too. Hence, catalytic conversion reduces the level of nitrogen oxide in air (tropospheric sphere) as a result human health is ensured.
  • The reduction in the level of nitrogen oxide in air decreases the chemical reaction with Sulphur dioxide and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Due to this there is reduction in smog and acid rain. Decrease of nitrogen oxide in air means favorable condition for the growth of plants.
  • Catalytic conversion is also responsible for lowering the level of carbon dioxide in air as a result there is reduction in acute and chronic carbon monoxide poisoning. This (acute and chronic carbon monoxide poisoning) is responsible for damaging central nervous system and heart.

Adsorption: VOCs are common air pollutant. After escaping from its source, VOCs in atmosphere react with nitrogen oxide in presence of sunlight to form ozone. This reaction helps in the formation of particulates as a result photochemical smog is developed. And smog is responsible for damaging plant and animal. It causes severe respiratory diseases for humans. To mitigate the threat posed by VOCs, adsorption solution is used. Adsorption of VOCs ensures air quality. Its (Adsorption) process is performed in a fixed bed of porous solid medium that has high adsorptive capacity.

  • Carbon adsorption solution is quite effective against mercury emission as its (mercury) toxic feature is seriously threatening the environment, animals and plants. Mercury pollution can damage central nervous system of human beings and animals.
  • Activated carbon adsorption removes ozone checking different kind of diseases like asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Subarna Poudel is a researcher with Frost & Sullivan. He can be reached at subarna.poudel@frost.com

Sapan Agarwal drives content and marketing for Frost & Sullivan. Sapan is based out of Kuala Lumpur Malaysia and can be reached at sapan.agarwal@frost.com | +603 6204 5830

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