Pollution has become a major global problem ever since the Industrial Revolution. We have been burning gasses and producing chemicals at a noxious rate for over a century now and it’s becoming more and more evident that this is extremely detrimental to our health and the planet’s future. We need only look at the pictures of smog from China to realise that something is going desperately wrong, and see that something has to give!
Well, we’re trying to push forward as a company with the green movement very prominently in our minds. As such we’re trying to take every step to curb our effects on global pollution and reduce our carbon footprint. From our sourcing of materials to the way we can affect air quality in your home, our fight against pollution begins from the ground up.
Typically pollution is caused by industrial chemical reactions and is blamed on the following chemicals:
- Sulfur Oxides (produced by burning fossil fuels and by volcanoes)
- Nitrogen Oxides (most notably Nitrogen Dioxide, is formed by high-temperature combustion and in the manufacture of explosives. Reacting with Sulfur Dioxide produces acid rain)
- Carbon Monoxide (the product of incomplete combustion of materials such as wood, coal and natural gas)
- Volatile Organic Compounds (Methane and other Hydrocarbons; Methane is produced by farming and many other industrial processes and is a major contributor to rapid global warming. Hydrocarbon VOCs can catalyse the creation of low-level ozone, and sustain the life of Methane in the air)
These are only a few examples of pollutant chemicals, there are many others including persistent free radicals, radioactive pollutants, and ammonia which also contribute a great deal to global warming and creating an unsafe environment.
It’s very easy to blame large manufacturing companies and their plants for the creation of these chemicals and their effects on the atmosphere. After all, it is their industrial processes which will contribute the largest amount to air pollution. What many people ignore is that these chemical plants are trying to keep up with global demand for products, and in doing so having to manufacture things in a way that creates an incredible amount of pollution.
With this in mind, we should all be thinking about our spending habits, the products that we actually buy and the number of fossil fuels that we burn. Global warming is very much an imminent danger and it means that we must now do something about it before it’s too late. We have already gone some way to reducing pollution by limiting the number of CFCs that we produce industrially, but there are many more harmful substances we are releasing into our atmosphere at an alarming rate.
With the Kyoto Agreement on its long road to reduce greenhouse emissions and the Gothenburg Protocol limiting pollutant production in the EU, things are certainly on the right track regarding changes in the way we approach pollution. It’s a sad fact that much of the world is behind us on this matter and we can only hope they will realise the damage they are doing soon!
Image by Mikael Miettinen