Most recent studies have shown that India ranks the Highest, beating China, in Ozone Pollution.
People wake up to a smoggy morning everyday in India. This smog mainly comprises of Ozone, an airborne pollutant.
Over the past 17 years, Ozone Pollution in India has increased by approximately 24% while globally it has increased approximately by 10%. Increasing Ambient Particulate and Ozone Pollution alone was the cause of atleast 2.54 lakh deaths in the year 2015 alone. It has also damaged millions of tons of the country’s major crops causing losses of over a billion dollars and destroying food that could have fed lakhs of people who are below the poverty line.
Ozone or Ozone Pollutants are formed when oxides oxides of nitrogen and volatile organic compounds (VOC) react with each other in the presence of sunlight. Major sources of oxides of nitrogen and volatile organic compounds include:
- Emissions from Industrial Facilities
- Emissions from Power Plants
- Motor Vehicle Exhaust
- Chemical Solvents
The effects of Ozone Pollution lead to:
- Reduced Photosynthesis in Plants
- Slow growth of Plants
- Increased Sensitivity in Plants towards – diseases, damage from insects and other pollutants
- It causes change in the water and nutrient cycles
- Changes the quality of habitat
- It reduces air quality, causing a various respiratory problems
- Short term effects of Ozone Pollutants show temporary damage to lungs and eyes
With the alarming rise in pollution and its effects, its impacts and tolls in India are 21 times greater compared to that of Pakistan 13 times greater than Bangladesh. A report was prepared by HEI in cooperation with the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington and the University of British Columbia. Based on the data published we can see the recent increase in the average concentration of ozone pollutants.
- Article by Times of India : www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/environment/pollution/india-tops-list-of-countries-in-ozone-pollution-deaths/articleshow/57156322.cms
- Air Quality Data Published by HEI : www.stateofglobalair.org