The Good Air Lady
The Good Air Lady
talks about what you breathe
indoors and out

Air Pollution in the Asia/Pacific Area

Air pollution in the Asia/Pacific region of the world is a serious problem, not only because it's so bad, but because the region is such a large portion of the world. The pollution problem impacts not only the huge numbers of people living there, but people all over the planet because of air currents mixing the polluted air with clean air found elsewhere. This air pollution problem effects health, agriculture and even water.

The area known as Asia/Pacific includes many different countries. The countries that are usually included in this area are Australia, the far eastern parts of Russia, and East and South Asian countries that are close to the Pacific Ocean. This area is full of different religions, races, languages, and customs, but they all have one very important thing in common -- air pollution. The air pollution in the Asia/Pacific region not only affects the environment, but also the health of the people today and for many generations to come around the world.

Unfortunately, air pollution in the Asia/Pacific region was not an issue that received much attention until the last few years. This issue has come to the forefront of the attention of many different people due to the rapid population growth and economic expansion that has occurred over the last decade. These two things have caused the air pollution in the Asia/Pacific geographic area to significantly increase and, in turn, the health problems of the people of this region have increase. The air pollution in this area can possibly be responsible for up to 500,000 premature deaths each year and this number is steadily increasing.

What are some of the sources of air pollution in the Asia/Pacific area? There are a great number of sources that they have in common with the rest of the world, including car emissions and other emissions from fuel and industries. The Asia/Pacific area is also greatly impacted by the increased burning of coal to help fuel the greatly increasing economies of China and India and the burning of trees and other brush on the island of Borneo to help clear the land. These reasons are considered to be large contributors to the air pollution in the Asia Pacific area.

The smog has become so bad in some cities that it causes many people to have to stay inside their homes, because it causes severe breathing difficulties for them. I've seen pollution in cities like Beijing and Shanghai that was so bad I couldn't see more than 50 feet -- and that wasn't even during the winter when the air quality is typically at its worst.

What measures are being taken to help decrease the air pollution in the Asia Pacific? The most important step is from officials in countries that are affected most by the Asia Pacific's air pollution problems who are coming together to create a plan for decreasing the air pollution. The most common ways they are suggesting is to enact regulation reforms. These reforms include stricter fuel quality and tighter fuel efficiency requirements, and other air quality regulations. Strong political reforms will need to be put into place by the different countries, however, to make sure that these regulations are enforced.

Alternative electric generation is being installed all over Asia. Hydro-power, like damming the Yangtze River, has great potential in helping clean up air pollution in Asia/Pacific areas, but care needs to be taken to prevent far-reaching environmental impacts. Wind farms are being erected in Australia, India, China, Japan and other countries, increasing wind-power capacity by 25 percent, without increasing air pollution. Solar energy is also making a difference in this region of the world. Not only are there large installations that can impact large populations of people, but there are also small installations that help remote communities and resorts. Each of these steps helps reduce air pollution.

Air pollution in the Asia/Pacific is a huge problem. If the reforms are not put into place, it will continue to make it more difficult for people to live in this area. And because of air currents stirring up the globes' air supplies, the pollution will impact people all around the world. This doesn't even take into consideration the impacts of air pollution on the environment, from crops and animals, to water and man-made structures. With the large number of people concentrated this area, more needs to be done to reduce air pollution in the Asia/Pacific region.