Death Of A Planet


Death Of A Planet Essay, Research Paper

Death of a Planet

Air pollution is a very big problem in the United States. A large part

of air pollution comes from cars. The Environmental Protection Agency says,

“The most polluting activity an average person does everyday is drive their

car”(1 factsheet OMS-5). Most people probably aren’t aware that they are

polluting the environment. Maybe if everyone knew how serious this pollution

problem is, they would find ways to reduce the pollution.

Most pollution that is released by cars comes from the exhaust, mainly

in the form of hydrocarbons(1 factsheet, OMS-5). Hydrocarbons are organic

compounds ,a combination of two or more elements, that contain only carbon and

hydrogen (2 factsheet, OMS-5). Hydrocarbons are released when fuel in the

engine burns partially. When hydrocarbons come in contact with sunlight they

form ground level ozone. Ground level ozone is a major ingredient in the

formation of smog. Ground level ozone is responsible for irritating eyes,

damaging lungs, and it complicating respiratory problems. Hydrocarbons aren’t

the only pollutants released through car exhaust.

Two more pollutants released through car exhaust are carbon monoxide and

nitrogen oxide. The first reduces the flow of oxygen to the bloodstream, and

could harm people with heart disease. Nitrogen oxide is formed when a car

engine gets hot. It contains chemicals that aid in the formation of ground

level ozone as well as acid rain (2 factsheet, OMS-5). Acid rain destroys the

outsides of buildings, statues, etc. Acid rain can also contaminate drinking

water, damage vegetation, and destroy sealife. These two pollutants are two of

the most dangerous pollutants released through car exhaust. If these two

pollutants were cut down just a little bit our planet would be a safer place to


Carbon dioxide is another gas released through exhaust emissions. It

isn’t dangerous directly to humans, but it is considered to be a “green house

gas.” A “greenhouse gas” is a gas that is associated with global warming.

Global warming is the gradual increase of temperature due to human activity.

Certain gases, such as carbon dioxide, methane, and ozone allow radiation from

the sun to break through the atmosphere and go to the earth’s surface. Global

warming affects all living things on the entire planet (4 factsheet OMS-5).

Another type of hydrocarbon pollutant occurs through fuel evaporation.

These hydrocarbon pollutants are produced four different ways. The first way is

called diurnal. This is when the venting of gasoline vapors occurs due to the

temperature of the car’s engine rising. The second way is running losses. This

is the venting of gasoline when the car’s engine is running. The third way is

called hot soak. Hot soak occurs when gasoline evaporates after the car has

been turned off. The fourth way additional hydrocarbons are released occurs

when a person is refueling a car. This occurs when a person fills up their gas

tank. While the tank is being filled gasoline vapors are forced out. One way

to cut down on this type of pollution is to have the car tuned properly. The

refueling problem can be reduced with the use of vapor recovery system. This

system traps the vapor inside the tank. These systems are present at many gas

stations in highly polluted areas (4 factsheet, OMS-5).

Some cities around the world are very dangerous to live in because of

car pollution. One city is Athens, Greece. In Athens the number of deaths rises

on days with greater air pollution. Just breathing the air in Bombay is the same

as smoking half a pack of cigarettes a day (97 Brown). Over 150 million people

in the United States live in areas where the Environmental Protection Agency

considers the air to be unhealthy. The American Lung Association says, “The

unhealthy air leads to 120, 000 deaths every year” (97 Brown). The citizens of

earth are killing themselves. They are killing themselves for convenience.

Eventhough the actions taken by the government and car manufacturers have

reduced car emissions a lot since 1970, The number of miles an average person

travels in a day has doubled (4 factsheet OMS-4). The average person must find

a way to reduce the number of miles he or she drives. One way to do these is to

car pool. If a large number of people started to car pool, pollution produced

by cars would be reduced. This would reduce the amount of smog in urban areas,

making these polluted areas a better place to live.

There are many other alternatives to reduce car emissions besides

carpooling. One possible solution is to use fuels cleaner than gasoline. There

are many types of alternative fuels that could be used, and the number of fuels

increases as technology becomes more advanced. One type of alternative fuel is

alcohol. One type of alcohol is methanol. Methanol is made from natural gas

and coal. Another type of alcohol is ethanol. Ethanol is produced from grains

or sugar. Cars fueled by alcohol could produce as much as 80 to 90 percent less

emissions than cars fueled with gasoline. Both methanol and ethanol are high

octane liquid fuels. The reason why these two fuels are possible alternatives is

because they are efficient and made from natural ingredients, and they pollute

less (4 factsheet, OMS-4).

Another alternative fuel is electricity. This isn’t a very efficient

fuel right now, because the technology is limited. Recent advances in the

production of electric cars could make this a reality in the future. It is

possible for cars powered with electricity to release little or no emissions.

If this alternative fuel becomes a reality and is used in most cars, it will

knock a big chunk out of the pollution problem all around the world (5 factsheet,


Another alternative fuel is natural gas. Natural gas is only good for

cars where driving long distances isn’t important. It is possible for natural

gas to produce 85 percent to 95 percent less emissions than gasoline fueled cars

(5 factsheet, OMS-5). With this alternative fuel car emissions could be reduced

a great deal to benefit the entire world.

Another way to reduce pollution released by gasoline powered cars is to

test them for dangerous amounts of pollutants regularly. Emissions testing

programs are already in effect in California, Arizona, and Colorado. Texas will

have an emissions testing program soon. The test is very simple. A car is

tested for hydrocarbons and other ground level ozone forming chemicals that are

released through car exhaust. If the level of pollutants is high, the car fails

the test. Then the car must be taken to a mechanic, so the engine can be tuned

to release fewer chemicals into the air. After the car is taken to a mechanic

and repaired, the car is tested again. This test does cost the car owner money,

but it’s a small price to pay for the reduction of pollutants released by cars

(105 Brown).

Researchers are working on a machine that can test cars for hydrocarbon

pollution while the car is on the road. This system is called the remote

sensing device. The device is placed on the side of the road. As a car drives

by it measures the level of hydrocarbon emissions released by the car. The

system can’t measure nitrogen oxide emissions yet, but researchers are working

on another system to go along with this device. If the car is releasing a high

level of hydrocarbon emissions a video camera takes a picture of the car’s

license plate, and sends the license plate number and the emissions data to a

computer (1 factsheet, OMS-15). Then the owner of the car is notified about the

polluting car, and they are required to have the problem fixed (2 factsheet,

OMS-15). If remote sensing devices are used to detect hydrocarbon emissions,

polluting cars can be recognized sooner than regular testing, done year by year.

If the remote sensing devices are used people don’t have to worry about their

car being tested. They just have to get their car repaired when the device says

it’s polluting the environment.

Air pollution caused by cars is a serious problem that can be reduced by

average everyday people. If the citizens of earth don’t act fast, and reduce

the amount of pollution caused world wide, earth will be a horrible place to

live. If something isn’t done soon there might not be a place to live at all.

Brown, Lester R. The World Watch Reader: On Environmental Issues.

NewYurk:Norton, 1991. 97-105.

The Environmental Protection Agency. Automobiles and Ozone: Factsheet OMS-4. WWW/04-ozone.htm. 1993. 4.

The Environmental Protection Agency. Automobile Emission: An overiew: Factsheet

OMS-5. www/05-autos.htm. 1994. 1-5.

The Environmental Protection Agency. Remote Sensing: A Supplemental Tool for

Vehicle Emission Control: Factsheet OMS-15. www/ 15-

-remot.htm. 1993. 1-2.

Додати в блог або на сайт

Цей текст може містити помилки.

A Free essays | Essay
14кб. | download | скачати

Related works:
The Red Planet
Planet Venus
Out Of The Silent Planet
Our Radiant Planet
Mars Planet
Planet Earth
Earth Planet
Planet Earth
© Усі права захищені
написати до нас