Рефераты. Air contamination caused by human activity

Air contamination caused by human activity



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 -

atmosphere» etc.)

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

industry etc.

«If you live in the advanced country, with probability 2:3 you breathe

by air that does not meet the standards»[2]. 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



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»[3].

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 % [4].

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.


| | |

|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.[7]

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.


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.[8]

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[9]. 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 %[10]).


[1] Raimers N.F. Ecology (theory, laws, rules, principles 8 hypothesis).

Moscow., 1994. 6 p.

[2] Gregg Easterbrook.Cleaning Up // Newsweek. 1989.24 July.p.27-42.

[3] Sosunova I.A. All-Russian c и hypothesis). Moscow., 1994. 6 p.

[4] Gregg Easterbrook.Cleaning Up // Newsweek. 1989.24 July.p.27-42.

[5] Sosunova I.A. All-Russian conference Ministry of the Nature of RF

1994.Health.1994. Nov.

[6] Aisenshtat R.D. Ecological situation in Russian Federation. Moscow,

1993.45 p.

[7] Roubin L.N.Especially protected territories. Moscow,1995.67 p.

[8] Kulikov L.М.. Bases of economic knowledge Moscow, 1998. 233 p.

[9] Yushkova L.What we breathe, what we drink. Yakutia.1997.22 March.

[10] Karin P.R. Ecological boomerang / Science and life. 1996.№ 5. P.34

[11] Politkovskaya А. Till catastrophe?/New times,1994.№18/19.P.51-53.

[12] .Stanley H. Evolution as a Disease // Chemtech. 1995. №8. P. 46-69.

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