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Chapter: How does air pollution move?

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Air transport and Air Pollution Effects

Air transport is the term used to describe the mechanism by which air pollution moves from an emissions source to a receptor.

How does air pollution move?

 

Air transport is the term used to describe the mechanism by which air pollution moves from an emissions source to a receptor. A source is a location (i.e., smokestack, chimney, exhaust pipe) from which the pollutant emanates and a receptor is the place (i.e., soil, vegetation, waterbodies, human lungs) where the pollutant is deposited. The atmosphere itself is the transporter of pollutants from sources to receptors. If the wind carries the plume of pollution high enough in the air, it may travel for hundreds of miles before being brought to earth. This is known as long-range or long-distance transport.

 

Air Pollution Effects

 

The air is an important component of the natural system of a park in its own right. The presence of pollution in the atmosphere results directly in air quality degradation. Air pollution is also a critical factor affecting the quality of other environmental resources as well as the human-made structures and facilities in the area. Polluted air can and has harmed park resources in a variety of ways depending upon the chemistry of the pollutant, weather and environmental conditions, and the nature or sensitivity of park resources. Examples of this harm include vegetative discoloration and growth disruption from ozone, loss of aquatic species from stream acidification, shifts in nutrient availability from acid deposition, and erosion of building surfaces and rock formations. Air pollution impairs visibility and contributes to climate change. Air pollution can also be detrimental to human health.

 

 

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