Air contamination caused by human activity
AIR CONTAMINATION CAUSED BY HUMAN ACTIVITY
1. AIR CONTAMINATION
Insertion into atmosphere or the creation of the chemical agents and
substances caused by natural, and anthropogenous factors forms an air
contamination. The natural sources of contamination of an atmosphere are
volcanos, wood fires, dusty storms, a weathering etc. These factors do not
threaten with negative consequences to natural ecosystems, except some
catastrophic natural phenomena. For example, the eruption of a volcano
Cracatao in 1883, when into atmosphere 18 km cubes of ashes powder were
thrown out ; eruption of a volcano Catmay (Alaska) in the 1912 that had
thrown out 20 km cubes of friable products. The ashes of these eruptions
were spread over large part of the surface of the Earth and has caused the
reduction of solar radiation by 10-20 % that accordingly has caused in
northern hemisphere reduction of annual average temperature of air by 0.5
However per the last decades the anthropogenous factors of an air
contamination became to exceed by scales natural factors, acquiring global
character. They can render various effects on atmosphere: direct - on state
of the atmosphere (heating, change of humidity etc.); influence on chemical
properties of the atmosphere (change of structure, increase of
concentration of carbon dioxide, aerosols, freons etc.); influence on
properties of a spreading surface (change of size, albedo, system «ocean -
To basic sources of contamination we can refer: the industrial
enterprises, transport, power system, agriculture etc. Among industries
especially toxic wastes are made by enterprises of colour metallurgy,
chemical, petrochemical, black metallurgy, wood-working, pulp&paper
«If you live in the advanced country, with probability 2:3 you breathe
by air that does not meet the standards». Is this air bad enough? It's
bad enough to cause 50 thousand anticipatory death annually. It's
potentially enough bad to destroy ecosystem and to make the Earth
2. AIR CONTAMINATION IN RUSSIAN FEDERATION
The ecological problems of the Russian society have become aggravated
recently so, that without their consideration it is impossible to decide
political and economic tasks, to form a notion of prospects of social
development. «A Level of ecological safety, in opinion of the experts, is
lowest: 94 % of the interrogated experts have evaluated an ecological
situation in country as unsuccessful».
The analysis of the statistical data of the amount of wastes of harmful
substances in atmosphere during 90-s' has shown that on the whole in
Russian Federation during this period there was a significant decrease of
wastes by 6525000 tons or 19 % .
So, «in 1992 in comparison with 1991 wastes of contaminating substances
in atmospheric air from stationary sources have decreased less than by 17
%. Althogh the level of production in almost all branches was decreased by
«Leaders» of wastes of harmful substances in an atmosphere during 3
years are Krasnoyarsk region, the Tyumen, Sverdlovsk, Chelyabinsk, Kemerovo
area and these areas only by the given parameter it is necessary to
attribute to a zone of the ecological catastrophe (see table). As you see
most contaminated regions are economic centers of Russian Federation and
unfortunately most populated.
AIR CONTAMINATION IN RUSSIAN FEDERATION
| | |
|Region |Wastes into atmosphere |
| |Thousands tons |% |
|Russian Federation |31804,2 |100,0 |
|Including | | |
|Krasnoyarsk region |3182,7 |10,0 |
|Sverdlovsk area |2401,8 |7,5 |
|The Tyumen area |2369,8 |7,4 |
|The Chelyabinsk area |2060,5 |6,0 |
|The Kemerovo area |1208,9 |4,0 |
|The Vologda area |978,0 |3,0 |
|Irkutsk area |967,0 |3,0 |
|The Orenburg area |911,8 |3,0 |
Source: Demidenko L.О. Changing atmosphere. Moscow., 1996.78 p.
For example, as a result of activity of the industrial enterprises
Cherepovetsk is lead up to the verge of the ecological catastrophe. And the
main part here belongs to joint-stock company «Severstal»; the share of the
company in wastes into atmosphere annually has constituted 95 % of all-
As to Yakutsk, in opinion of the chief of the group of the monitoring
center of the environment pollution of Yakutsk hydroweather station
headquarter Ludmila Yushkova, it is contaminated by the weighted substances
(dust), oxide of carbon, dioxide of nitrogen and, that especially alarms,
by benzapiren. In winter northern part of Yakutsk hardly suffer where the
industrial objects are concentrated. The greatest pollution by dust and
oxide of carbon is noted in the center of the city owing to the large
congestion of motor-vehicle transport there. Nevertheless the concentration
of heavy metals in air is lower than norm and lower than estimates over
cities of Russian Federation.
Now 2/3 population of Russia continues to live in conditions of
dangerous air contamination. It undoubtedly has an effect on their health,
as the various chemical elements are most intensively absorbed by organism
during breathing. But the effect of changes of the environment is
especially harmful for quality of genofond.
3. ATMOSPHERE PROTECTION MEASURES
Measures of the protection of atmosphere are subdivided into three
large groups. First group: decrease measures of gross amount of
contamination, thrown out into atmosphere. This is the improvement of the
quality of fuel, using of special liquids in fuel etc. Same group of
measures includes perfecting of technological processes including
development of the closed cycle production without making of harmful
substances into atmosphere.
The second group includes measures of protection of atmosphere by
dispersion, processing and neutralization of harmful wastes.
And finally the third group of measures assumes prevention of the air
contamination by rational placing of the «dirty» enterprises - sources of
harmful wastes with consideration of natural conditions and potential
possibility of the air contamination.
For realization of atmosphere protection measures the strict state
control of air environment, economic and legal stimulation of measures for
control of its pollution are also important.
But no one company begins to reduce its wastes if it does not meet
their interests, if it is not profitable for them (especially for Russia).
Unfortunately it is hard to make them reduce pollution by prohibitions. In
this connection it is offered to distribute interesting experience of the
USA, Canada, Germany and Austria where enterprises redeem quotas for wastes
of harmful gases (i.e. pay for using of natural environment belonging to
all world community). Other variant is introduction of the international
"green tax " for harmful wastes. In this case firms would be interested in
ecologically clean production.
But unfortunately in most cases nature protection activity does not
yield a profit for enterprises, except of cases connected with useful
using, that is utilization of wastes caught during cleaning of waste water
and gases. The most of these substances are valuable raw material (sulfur,
a dust of colour metals etc.) and can be used in production, promoting
thereby for receiving of the additional profit.
This measure, certainly, requires forward scientific technologies. So,
for example, in Norway in 80's there was one factory on production of
aluminium, it threw out into an atmosphere many weighted particles,
especially lead, and the management of this factory was compelled to use
special dustcatchers. By 90's the factory became unprofitable, then it has
paid attention to this thrown leaden dust, It appears that this dust is a
very valuable material for production of completely new high-strength
plates. Now this factory exists only due to waste of this dust. In
Russia, much to our regret, there are no such examples.
Finally large significant part has an ecological culture of the
population (one of examples of respect of the nature is the act of the
board directors chairman of the company «Monsanto» Reachard Mahoney. He,
having seen, how much toxic wastes his company makes, was shocked and has
decided to reduce a level of toxic wastes by 90 %).
 Raimers N.F. Ecology (theory, laws, rules, principles 8 hypothesis).
Moscow., 1994. 6 p.
 Gregg Easterbrook.Cleaning Up // Newsweek. 1989.24 July.p.27-42.
 Sosunova I.A. All-Russian c и hypothesis). Moscow., 1994. 6 p.
 Gregg Easterbrook.Cleaning Up // Newsweek. 1989.24 July.p.27-42.
 Sosunova I.A. All-Russian conference Ministry of the Nature of RF
 Aisenshtat R.D. Ecological situation in Russian Federation. Moscow,
 Roubin L.N.Especially protected territories. Moscow,1995.67 p.
 Kulikov L.М.. Bases of economic knowledge Moscow, 1998. 233 p.
 Yushkova L.What we breathe, what we drink. Yakutia.1997.22 March.
 Karin P.R. Ecological boomerang / Science and life. 1996.№ 5. P.34
 Politkovskaya А. Till catastrophe?/New times,1994.№18/19.P.51-53.
 .Stanley H. Evolution as a Disease // Chemtech. 1995. №8. P. 46-69.