How to deal with deadly smog?


How to deal with deadly smog?
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How to deal with deadly smog?

How to deal with deadly smog?

Smog is a kind of air pollution, originally named for the mixture of smoke and fog in the air.Major component of smog is ozone.

Ozone is an odorless, colorless gas composed of three atoms of oxygen..Ozone occurs naturally in the Earth’s upper atmosphere— 10 to 30 miles above the Earth’s surface—where it forms a protective layer that shields us from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays.

Ozone, when it occurs at ground level, presents a serious air quality problem. In the Earth’s lower atmosphere, near ground level, ozone is formed when pollutants emitted by cars, power plants, industrial boilers, refineries, chemical plants, and other sources react chemically in the presence of sunlight. When inhaled— even at very low levels— ozone can cause a number of respiratory health effects.

Health effects of ozone:

Immediate effects:

  • Increased difficulty breathing • Inflammation of lung lining • Impairment of the lung’s natural defenses • Increased episodes of respiratory infections, including pneumonia • Temporary reduction of lung function (even in healthy adults) • Increased hospital admissions and emergency room visits • Excess mucus production • Increased potential for premature deaths, specifically in people with cardiovascular and respiratory disease

Long-term effects:

  • Irreversible changes in lung structure • Permanent reduction in lung function • Increased risk of chronic bronchitis and emphysema

Who’s at risk?

  • People with unusual susceptibility to ozone • People with pre-existing lung disease (such as asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis) • Children and young adults who are active outdoors •The elderly who are active outdoors or who have pre-existing lung disease.

What can do to reduce ozone levels?

We can all help reduce ozone levels by taking the following steps:

Drive less. For example, instead of using a car, you may want to walk, use mass transit, or ride a bike. Carpool.

Make sure your car is well-tuned.

Take care not to spill gasoline when you fill the tank of your car or lawn or recreation equipment.

Make sure that you tightly seal the lids of chemical products—such as solvents, garden chemicals, or household cleaners—to keep evaporation to a minimum.

Practice energy efficiency at home and at work by turning off and/or unplugging lights, computers, rechargers and other electronics and setting the air conditioning at the highest temperature setting needed for comfort.

Replace solvent-based products which have volatile organic compounds (VOCs) with water-based products whenever possible.

Image source: thelogicalindian.com

Ref: www.nj.gov