Actions we can take to reduce Air Pollution

Air is essential for all humans, flora and fauna and other organisms. Its importance can be estimated by the fact that humans can survive without food and water for a few days, but without air it is impossible to survive.

Air pollution1 (both outdoor and indoor) is a major and under-appreciated contributor to ill health in India, on an average responsible for nearly 2 years of life expectancy loss across the population.

As per update on 18th November 20192, air pollution in the national capital was so toxic after Diwali that the Environmental Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) had declared a public health emergency in the Delhi-NCR and advised people, especially children and the aged, to refrain from venturing outside their homes.

Actor and climate-activist Leonardo DiCaprio3 has tried to turn attention to climate conditions in India, the focus being the dismal air quality in the country’s capital of Delhi.

We have already discussed about how does Outdoor Air Pollution affect Indoor Air Quality in previous blog. As per current state it is important to reduce air pollution which thereby will improve indoor air quality. We thought to make you aware of some actions that can be taken by us to reduce air pollution. Following are the actions that can reduce air pollution:

1. Use Public Transportation

Encourage greater use of public transport by supporting the Metro, overhead rail, bus services and auto rickshaws to make it convenient for people to travel by public transport affordably and safely instead of using their own vehicles. Use your personal vehicle a lot less often. Vehicles are major contributory factors for increasing air pollution at the global level.

2. More CNG vehicles

Studies have shown that CNG4 is much more environment friendly in terms of carbon emissions and pollutants like SO2. Running car on green fuel will help to keep a check on air pollution in cities where the use of vehicles are primarily responsible for deteriorating air quality.

Additionally Government can encourage use of CNG in motor vehicles as it is a much cleaner fuel than petrol or diesel by considerably reducing the road tax and sales tax on CNG filled cars as compared to petrol and diesel four wheelers. Since there are at least 1,400 cars added to Delhi roads every day, all the cars should be restricted to using CNG only as all new petrol cars can be converted to CNG.

3. Car pooling

Car-pooling cuts down on the number of cars and vehicles on the road. Fewer cars means there is less carbon and other gases and pollution getting into the air. This protects the environment by keeping the air cleaner.

It is good for you. According to numerous health reports and research, air pollution caused by auto emissions can significantly increase the likelihood of health issues such as asthma, allergies, lung cancer, and the like. Research data has also suggested that carpooling can be far less stressful than simply commuting on your own.

4. Conserve energy

We should buy efficient appliances to use energy saving bulbs that consume less electricity. The less energy we all use, the lower our demand is on our use of power, which means less pollution. We should give up careless habits while using electricity and embrace good habits like switching off all the electrical appliances, fans, ACs, bulbs and tube lights, when leaving our room or office. Using fluorescent lighting and purchasing only energy-saving appliances, is a good option to reduce air pollution.

To reduce air pollution, we should make efforts to save energy, because whenever we burn fossil fuel, it contaminates the air. Apart from less petrol, diesel, natural gas, etc, even the use of electricity should also be brought down, as large amount of coal is used in production of electricity.

5. Drive Smartly

If you are driving on a regular basis, make sure that you are driving smart instead of wasting gas. Drive within the speed limit, make sure that there are not a lot of things in your car that will weigh it down, and do all that you can to conserve the amount of gas that you will be using on a regular basis.

6. Do regular Vehicle Check Up

It is important for you to have a regular check up of your vehicle to make sure it does not consume extra fuel. This will not only save your money but your vehicle will also last longer and thereby reduce level of pollution.

7. Keep Tires of vehicle properly Inflated

Vehicles consume more fuel when tires are not properly inflated and aligned. This will lessen your impact on the environment.

8. Say A Complete No-No To Bonfires & Crackers

Crackers and bonfire contribute to extensive air pollution in short duration. To understand more, read Diwali fireworks worsen Delhi’s hazardous air pollution5. So we should avoid it in order to reduce air pollution.

9. Burning waste

Burning garbage that includes plastics and electronics is the cause of most of air pollution. 29 percent of toxic, lung-affecting particles called PM 2.5 comes from burning garbage. Five percent of man-made carbon dioxide and 10 percent of mercury emissions comes from lighting trash on fire. To know the effects and solution of open burning, click here6.

10. Use bicycles

Air pollution occurs from a variety of sources and driving your car is just one of them. Each time a person chooses their bicycle over their vehicle, it cuts down on the air pollution in your community and town7.

You can also read a related study which was published 2 years ago, Click here8.

Conclusion

Each year millions of people die all around the world due to different pollution related problems. The key to live a healthy life is to identify the sources of air pollution and implement practical ways so that you can help to reduce air pollution. Hopefully we have been able to create awareness about how to reduce air pollution.

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