Air Pollution

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Air Pollution

Air Pollution: A Globlal Problem

Environmental ScienceBarbara Kowalkiewicz

Everybody needs to breath to liveBreathing dirty air causes health problems.Plants and animals need clean air as well.

Negative Impacts*More skin cancers, sunburns and premature aging of the skin.*More cataracts, blindness and other eye diseases.*Weakening of the human immune system (immunosuppression)*Decreases in plankton could disrupt the fresh and saltwater food chains.*Loss of biodiversity in our oceans, rivers and lakes could reduce fish yields for commercial and sport fisheries.

*In domestic animals, UV overexposure may cause eye and skin cancers. Species of marine animals in their developmental stage (e.g. young fish, shrimp larvae and crab larvae) have been threatened in recent years by the increased UV radiation under the Antarctic ozone hole.*Wood, plastic, rubber, fabrics and many construction materials are degraded by UV radiation.*The economic impact of replacing and/or protecting materials could be significant.

*The only way to do that is to remove the excess chlorine and bromine from the stratosphere. And the only way to do that is to stop making CFCs.*As individuals, we should follow the Recycle, Reuse, Reduce, initiative to help control climate change which has a key part for the layer to recover

Ozone is a reactive molecule that serves as a shield from harmful UV B radiation. Ozone is deteriorating due to air pollution that carries the chemicals chlorine and bromine. UV B radiation causes skin cancer and cataract in humans and it as harmful to animals. Extra UV B radiation can inhibit the reproduction of phytoplankton which in excess quantities can be harmful to ocean creatures, such as fish, shrimp and crabs to name a few.

Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), chemicals found in spray aerosols are the primary culprits in ozone layer breakdown. When CFCs reach the upper atmosphere, they are exposed to ultraviolet rays, which causes them to break down into substances that include chlorine. The chlorine reacts with the oxygen atoms in ozone and rips apart the ozone molecule. One atom of chlorine can destroy more than a hundred thousand ozone molecules, according to the the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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