What contributes to air pollution?
This invisible hazard knows no borders, and it’s something urban dwellers live with daily. Pollution can come from natural sources, such as volcanic eruptions and dust storms, and man made sources, toxic fumes from vehicles and chemical plants, for example. Some major sources of air pollution include:
The impact of air pollution on Asia
Asia currently has the worst air pollution ranking, accounting for 2/3 of the world’s air pollution deaths. Increasingly, this silent threat is becoming more noticable, due to slash-and-burn forestry, sending clouds of smoke and ash particles to neighbouring countries. More recently, earlier this year, residents of Bangkok spent weeks in enveloped in smoke filled air. This was due to a toxic combination of vehicle emissions, construction works, crop burning, factory operations, coal-based energy production, and stale air.
Countries are actively looking for ways to improve air quality. One of the reasons that Singapore enjoys relatively clean air compared to our neighbours, is that the number of vehicles allowed on our roads is controlled. The COE (Certificate of Entitlement), and ERP road tolls help achieve this. Additionally, the Vehicular Emissions Scheme (VES), monitors all vehicles for exhaust emissions and fuel quality standards.
You can help reduce air pollution!
Yes, your daily decisions as an individual can help keep our air clean. Here are some ideas:
How air pollution impacts your health
Air pollutants include carbon and ozone gases, sulfur oxides, lead, and photochemical fumes, and are harmful to our health. Particulate matter, tiny airborne particles are able to pass through your immune system and lodge in your lungs, bloodstream and brain, is the most harmful. Exposure to air pollution results in a cascade of free radical production in your body, resulting in lower immune resistance, premature aging, and slower cellular repair, to name a few.
Without proper protection, the buildup of these particles and free radicals in your system may lead to various health issues, including respiratory diseases, cardiovascular damage and nervous system damage. Recent studies show that air pollution also causes premature aging of the skin and hair.
How to protect yourself against air pollution
We hope you are inspired to do your part in reducing air pollution, and also take conscious steps to keep yourself and your family healthy when blue skies aren’t in sight!
BioMed-Chemist, Formulator, Fitness Freak & Full-time free spirit
Dedicated to helping people find their best self through nutrition and positive vibes.