IndoorAir Pollution in India
Pollutionrefers to contamination of something by impurities. In the samecontext air pollution simply refers to contamination of the air(Taneja et al. 2008, p. 228-245). This has been a major problem inall parts of the universe ranging from the developed to thedeveloping countries. However the problem has been much higher andrampant in the third world countries owing all these to contaminantssuch as the fine particulate matter (Kumar et al.2014, p.79). Theprose below addresses the air pollution problem in India, which hasbeen worse hit and is a representative of the developing third worldcountries.
Inthe recent past India has been countered by a rising number ofrespiratory diseases. This has created a huge uproar all over thecountry. The problem has been prevalent in India’s inhabitantsranging from children, adults and the elderly. India being adeveloping country has not been able to use alternative sources ofenergy like electricity and liquefied petroleum gas (Kumar etal.2014, p.79). Most of the time is spent indoors by this country’sinhabitants owing to high poverty levels in the country. The IndoorAir Quality has been quite low (Mitchell et al. 2007, p.958-964).This is due to the fine particulate matter released due to opencombustion of sources of energy that lead to environmentaldegradation. They include: coal, peat, wood and charcoal. The use ofstoves in cooking by the most of the communities also leads torelease of the same fine particulate matter. The hazardous matter isless than 2.5 microns. This means that most of the harmful waste isgaseous in nature. It includes all oxides of carbon and nitrogen.
Othersources of combustible energy are also responsible for the indoorpollution. They include vacuuming, use of candles as well as incenseburning, which is widely used in India for religious purposes (Smithet al. 2009, p. 211-220). In other circumstances dust is alsoresponsible for the air pollution menace that is causing a hugeoutcry in India. Moreover, in rare cases the prevalence of residentand heavy smokers leads to emission of smoke that is also responsiblefor the indoor air pollution.
Theabove mentioned matter is quite responsible for the increased deathrates quite prevalent in India in particularly children and theelderly who mostly spend time indoors (Li et al. 2011, p.1157-1163).This is because the gaseous contaminants cause respiratory andcardiovascular diseases to them. These diseases include: pneumoniaand the cardiovascular coronary syndrome. In the recent years thementioned diseases have been responsible for causing 2 milliondeaths. This has been sourced from several researches carried allover the country. This shows the reason for the urgent need to solvethe problem since it is already a real pain in the neck.
Indiais not the only country that suffers the consequences from theemission of these fine particulate matters. The developed countriesalso suffer from the same, though theirs is not as pronounced as thecase is in the developing countries. Countries from the EuropeanUnion (EU) like The United States of America counter the same problemthough it is not that serious (Kumar et al.2014, p.79). This can beattributed to the developed nature of the country and the rest, whichare developed like America. Most of its population uses LPG gas incooking. Therefore the Indoor Air Quality is high unlike in thedeveloping countries. However, most of the countries’ air pollutionis majorly attributed to industrialization since these countries arehighly industrialized. Therefore, most of the fine particulate matterwhich is less than 2.5 microns is from industrial exhausts andemissions (Laumbach et al. 2011, p.1157-1163).
Kenyaand Malawi face the same menace as India (Fullerton et al. 2008,p.843-851). Most of Malawi’s population approximately 80-90 percentparticularly the elderly persons are prone to the indoor airpollution. This is because, owing to the country’s poverty, most ofthese aged individuals spend most of their time being indoors. Thisinfers that most of the time they are the ones that inhale theseharmful gaseous products. Consequently owing to their low andweakened immune systems they are prone to respiratory, cardiovascularand related diseases as a result of the harmful particulate matters(Kumar et al.2014, p.79).
Mostof Malawi’s population use biomass in their cooking. This biomassfuel combustion leads to production of carbon (1) dioxide in cases ofincomplete combustion. This inhalation of this harmful gas causesrespiratory and related diseases. Endotoxin is also an alongsideemission that results from the incomplete biomass combustion. This isa far much worse emission as compared to carbon (1) dioxide. It is anairborne emission (Bernstein et al. 2008, p.585-591). More to that itis a part of gram’s cell wall and being a negative bacterium it isa potent inflammatory agent. This means that it is extremely harmfulto the human’s body. Owing to the under development in Malawi andsimilar countries in different sectors of the economy, such as thetransport one, the country also has dust as one of the majordangerous fine particulate matter that causes the high mortality andmorbidity rates. Morbidity refers to infancy deaths while mortalitygenerally refers to death rates. Dust is adversely responsible for asa causal agent of the respiratory and breath related ailments (Kumaret al.2014, p.79).
Tobaccosmoke is a gas that is less than 2.5 microns in diameter (Kumar etal.2014, p.79). It is quite harmful to man’s health. It isadditionally an indoor pollutant. This stems from the resident indoorsmokers. Both active and passive smokers are at a risk of contractingbreathing diseases. Passive smokers are at a higher risk since theyinhale a composition of the emitted smoke from the active smokers aswell as other pollutants exhaled by the active smokers. Therefore, incases where the active smokers smoke indoors in the presence of otherindividuals, the latter persons are bound to suffer the adverseeffects from the smoke exhaled by the former persons (Mitchell et al.2007, p.958-964).
Solidfuel such as firewood, charcoal, coal and animal dung are also causalagents of the indoor pollution (Laumbach et al. 2011, p.3-11). Theircausation is far much worse compared to the other causal agents.Incomplete combustion of charcoal in a poorly ventilated room leadsto production of carbon (1) dioxide. This leads to breathing problemsto the victims and adverse death to them (Kumar et al.2014, p.79).Research has proven that many deaths have been caused by charcoaljikos use in the most of the rural population in the developingworld. In other cases, these emissions have resulted to heartdiseases.
Mostof the urban population is not quite fortunate to be free from theindoor population. This is so because in the developing countrieslike India, Malawi and Kenya the Gross Domestic Product is quite lowand this translates to high poverty levels. Therefore, most of theurban population is in a position to afford safer sources ofcombustible energy. Most of them end up using stoves and charcoaljikos. They use the former mentioned as sources of heat for use intheir cooking. In the past, most of both the urban and ruralpopulation used candles and lantern lamps for lighting purposes. Thescenario has only started changing in the near past and I hope thatthe case will be much better in future, all these being attributed tothe availability and affordability of electricity in these countries.This source of energy is and will continue serving as a major reliefto the third world countries in a bid to solve the indoor airpollution, which still poses as a terrible nightmare that thecountries’ inhabitants hope to wake up and run away from some day.Otherwise, previously the crude sources of energy used have led tobreathing related ailments as well as eyesight problems besides theheart diseases too (Bernstein et al. 2008, p.585-591).
Haveyou been to Mumbai, India’s capital city? What of Nairobi, Kenya’scapital city? A tour to these two countries would really make youknow that this problem is a reality, but not a mere fallacy orexaggeration. A visit to several households would serve as a majorproof of evidence to my proposition of the two countries being undera real threat of indoor pollution. The case is no better in theoutdoor environment. This is due to the hazardous gases emitted bythe vehicles used in the two countries (Li et al. 2011, p.1157-1163).In fact, when one is not used to living in these countries, you arebound to find them quite inhabitable.
Forthe above reason one understands the seriousness of the situationfacing India. A tour to the industries leaves a lot to be desired.Choking smoke freely occupies the air. The environment is quitesuffocating (Taneja et al. 2008, p.228-245). This explains the highoccurrences of diseases that is the coronary, eyesight andrespiratory diseases prevalent in India. Nairobi is no different.These two major capital cities display just half of what the entirecountries face.
Whois to blame for the situation? Is it the people or the government?Are there any efforts that the government is partaking to put an endto this situation? What of the inhabitants? Are they contented withtheir lifestyle? Do you think that something should be quickly doneso as to solve the mess? These are the questions that occasionallydisturb one’s mind in an attempt to sympathize and empathize withthe situation. India is currently facing increased rates of cancerdiseases. One of the most prevalent types of cancer is the lung one(Laumbach et al. 2011, p. 3-11). What of the coronary diseases?
Alook at the infancy morbidity levels in the country. Many of thechildren who succumb to death due to respiratory diseases are thosebelow five years of age (Kumar et al.2014, p.79). If this scenariocontinues, then I assure you that the country’s economy is bound toeither stagnate or dwindle down .This is because these children arethe potential industrious community of the nation in the near future.This calls for real action by the state’s government and theinhabitants themselves (Smith et al .2009, p.211-220).
Icommend the government’s efforts to put an end to this saddeningand grave situation. It has enhanced accessibility and affordabilityof electricity. This will help in solving the lighting problem owedto use of candles and lantern lamps. Also electricity can be used inheating and cooking appliances. Introduction of cooking coils thatuse electricity will help shun the use of incombustible sources ofenergy. Additionally the government has gone a mile further toeducate the public on the need to reform and use current, modern andsafer sources of energies. These are just a few of the manystrategies that the government is putting in place in order to put anend to this situation (Bernstein et al. 2008, p.585-591).
Inconclusion one sees the rise of a new form of pollution that iscausing great harm to India (Taneja et al. 2008, p.228-245). In thepast the society only viewed outdoor pollution as the only menace.However the indoor pollution has risen to being the country’s majorconcern. This calls for the need to solve the situation before itturns to be a huge problem that will be difficult to eradicate.
Indiashows an image of what all the other countries are facing. Thedeveloped ones are no exemption to this as well as the developingones. Mexico, Malawi and Kenya are among the ones that are worse hit(Smith et al.2009, p.211-220). This worldwide problem ought to besolved before more deaths are caused. We humans should not be losingour loved ones to something that we can easily eradicate. It does noharm to be cautious in a case of the countries that are not yet badlyhit by the situation. Prevention is better than cure.
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