Air pollution

Air pollution is a major environmental health concern.  According to the WHO, in 2012, 7 million premature deaths worldwide were related to air pollution.  These deaths included diseases such as ischemic heart disease, lung cancer, and stroke, in addition to chronic respiratory diseases.  The major sources of air pollution are from power plants, industrial factories, and transportation.  The NRDC reports that the air pollutants with potential to trigger asthma attacks include particulate matter (small particles like ash, dust, vehicle exhaust, wood smoke), ground level ozone (smog), sulfur dioxide (from burning of coal and oil) and nitrogen oxide (from exhaust and power plants).  The American Lung Association is a great place to learn about how to manage asthma triggered by air pollution.

Carbon dioxide is another main air pollutant that comes from the burning of fossil fuels.  While it does not have direct health effects as the other pollutants, it is a major cause of global warming.  The main sources of carbon dioxide are also power plants, industries, and transportation.  Trees work to remove carbon dioxide from the air, so the addition of parks can help reduce carbon dioxide in cities.  Reducing energy use and product consumption can help to reduce your contribution of not only carbon dioxide, but of all types of air pollution.

Cleaner renewable energy such as wind and solar power are also great ways to reduce the amount of air pollution.