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Air Pollution: A Comprehensive Analysis of Harmful Substances Impacting Humans, Animals, and the Environment

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Air Pollution

Caused by the presence of substances that may cause adverse effects on humans, animals, and the environment. There are hundreds of air pollutants generated from natural or anthropogenic activities.
Air Pollution: A Comprehensive Analysis of Harmful Substances Impacting Humans, Animals, and the Environment the Health of people, animals, and the delicate balance of Ecosystems are all seriously threatened by air pollution, a major environmental problem on a global scale. Air pollution is a problem that is brought on by both natural and human activity. As a result, all living things and the ecosystem are negatively impacted. The many forms of air pollutants, their sources, and the potential effects on human health, animals, and the environment.


(a) Criteria Air Pollutants โ€“ Limits are fixed. Up to the certain limit of dose, there is no response generated. CO, NOX, SOX, Pb, Pm, O3

(b) HAP( Hazardous Air Pollutants ):- A group of pollutants known as hazardous air pollutants, commonly referred to as air toxics, present substantial health concerns even at low concentrations. Benzene, formaldehyde, cadmium, and other harmful compounds frequently found in industrial operations and car emissions are some of them.
Total 188, Ex:- cadmium, Benzene formaldehyde

(c) Non-criteria pollutants โ€“ Non-criteria pollutants are those for which there are no specified national ambient air quality guidelines. Examples include vinyl chloride, asbestos, arsenic, and mercury, all of which are extremely poisonous and can have serious negative effects on health. No limit is allowed. Mercury, Asbestos, Arsenic, Vinegar chloride


(a)Primary air pollutants:– Pollutants emitted directly from an identifiable source
Ex:- Co, So2, No, Hydrocarbon, PM
(b) Secondary air pollutants:- Not emitted directly, formed in atm. After reacting with another component.
Ex:- O3, H2SO4,PAN (Peroxy Acetyl Nitrate)

CO (carbon mono oxide)

  • Colorless odorless
  • It replaces ๐‘‚2 from the hemoglobin and form carboxyhemoglobin (CO – Hb) which is harmful in the respiratory process
  • Source-Automobile biggest source, cigarette as well, Produced by burning organic material (coal, wood)
  • May Cause -Damage nervous system, cardio diseases
  • Binds to Hemoglobin, and reduces o2 in blood.


  • Irritant gas
  • Source-Mainly originates from refineries, chemical plants, smelting operations, and burning of fuels.
  • Contribute to acid rain
  • May Cause- It increases breathing rate and cause oxygen deficit in the body.
  • Eye irritation, chest tightness, lung damage.
  • Asthma patients are badly affected.

NO2 (Nitrogen dioxide)

  • Reddish brown, Highly Reactive Gas
  • Source- Automobile, burning of fossil fuels incineration plants and furnace smokes
  • May cause- respiratory, infections, irritation of the lungs, and chest pain.
  • Formation of SMOG, Acid rain, alcohol warming.


  • Highly reactive gas
  • Pollutant in troposphere
  • Source- Exhaust from the vehicle, formed as a secondary pollutant
  • May Cause-Eye throat irritation, Asthma, lung damage

Pb (lead) (metallic element)

  • Source-Metal refineries, battery manufacturers, Iron & steel producers, Automobiles
  • May Cause -Anemia, High blood pressure
  • May affect the liver and kidney
  • Abnormalities to Embryo, pregnancy.


  • Small pieces of solid material and liquid droplets size (2.5๐œ‡๐‘š ๐‘ก๐‘œ 10๐œ‡๐‘š)
  • Source-Dust, ash from fires, smokestacks.
  • May Cause- Eye irritation, Bronchitis, lung damage


Source- Mainly produced from petroleum products.
May Cause -Body cancers.


  • Foul smelling with the odor of rotten egg.
  • Source- Produced by oil refineries, the rubber industry and tanneries etc.
  • May Cause headache, conjunctivitis, sleeplessness, and pain in the eyes
  • Exposure to this gas may cause loss of smell sense PAN
  • Smog caused by the interaction of hydrocarbons and oxidants’ presence of sunlight produces PAN.

Impact on Human Health

Depending on the type of air pollutant, several sources are used. Criteria air pollutants including CO, NOX, and SOX are heavily influenced by transportation, businesses, power plants, and home heating. In the course of manufacturing and chemical processes, HAP like benzene and formaldehyde are released.

There are many different health effects of air pollution, ranging from minor irritations to serious illnesses. The effects of pollutants like CO and NOX on the body’s respiratory system, cardiovascular system, and nervous system can be detrimental. HAP is connected to several cancer types, reproductive issues, and birth abnormalities. Ozone and particulate matter both have the potential to aggravate existing respiratory conditions such as asthma.

Impact on Animals and the Environment

Not only does air pollution harm people, but it also seriously endangers wildlife and the ecosystem. Exposure to harmful air pollutants can cause respiratory problems and decreased reproductive success in wildlife. Reduced crop production and impairment to natural ecosystems can result from ozone and acid rain harming plant life. When air pollutants accumulate in water bodies, they can upset the delicate balance of aquatic environments, harming aquatic life.


The temperature of the air normally decreases with an increase in altitude, the rate of fall is called lapse rate. When the rate of decrease occurs without heat exchange from the surrounding is called the adiabatic lapse rate.
Dry Adiabatic Lapse Rate=9.8degrees Celsius /Km

Air Pollution: A Comprehensive Analysis of Harmful Substances Impacting Humans, Animals, and the Environment

Air Pollution A Comprehensive Analysis of Harmful Substances Impacting Humans, Animals, and the Environment

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