Tag Archives: Pollution

Pollution, heat push up ozone level (1)

Good morning friends.  Pollution has been as any significant change in the physical, chemical or biological characteristics of the air, water and land that many negatively affect mankind, whether directly by being harmful to people or indirectly by causing natural resources to deteriorate. 

Despite early warnings, the level of ozone, known to be extremely harmful for health, in Delhi has been rising steadily. According to CSE latest findings, ozone levels have been unusually high this year, very often much above the standards proposed by the environment ministry. This is a direct consequence of a very hot summer and high pollution levels in the city.

The study, based on data available with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) reveals that in April, ozone levels have almost every day been high than the proposed standard of 90 microgram/cu m for a daily maximum eight-hourly average. The standards that have been in the pipeline for a while now are awaiting notification by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.

‘‘Ozone is not emitted by any source. It is instead the result of a photochemical reaction involving NOx, hydrocarbons and other pollutants under high temperature. This year has been specially hot but pollution is also growing in the city. It is a known fact that diesel vehicles emit three times more NOx than petrol vehicles and the government needs to take steps to control the growing number of vehicles,’’ said Anumita Roychowdhury, associate director, CSE. – The Times of India

toireporter@timesgroup.com

Diesel technology best for Indian auto sector: Expert

Good morning friends.  Fuels are quite expensive.  Relatively almost 50% or more   of the market were using diesel.  In some countries fuel is cheaper.

Better fuel efficiency and lesser chances of pollution has led to a rising acceptance of diesel technology in the automotive sector, said Pawan Goenka, president of Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) and a top functionary in the Mahindra & Mahindra Group, on Friday.

Speaking to media persons on the sidelines of the 11th Symposium on International Automobile Technology here, Goenka said it has now been proved that vehicles based on diesel technology, though apparently more expensive initially, prove cheaper in the long run.

Even in countries like the US, a large majority of commercial vehicles are now running on diesel and the market is heading for full dieselisation’ of the transport sector, said Goenka. He added that the passenger-vehicles segment is also showing a growing acceptance for diesel technology.

The need to use a high standard fuel injection methodology, use of superior quality materials to build the engines and the need to maintain strict emission norms makes a diesel-engine vehicle more expensive, but the payback comes in terms of nearly 20 per cent greater fuel efficiency, Goenka said. He added that in a country like India, where diesel has been subsidised and costs about 20 per cent less than petrol, the advantage is double.

Goenka also spoke about the latest development in diesel production, saying that the sulphur content in this fuel is reducing drastically and engine technology has also evolved significantly, reducing the need for maintenance.

“Cost of fuel is the key driver of the decision in favor of diesel,” Goenka said, pointing out that in Europe, where fuels are quite expensive, nearly 50 per cent of the market is diesel-driven. In the US or the Middle East, where fuel is cheap, there is a preference for petrol but even this is changing now, he said.

Ref:  The Times of India

Colleges students get ready to celebrate Environment Day

On Saturday, students of LD Arts College along with lecturers and the principal will get off their cars and bikes and ride a bicycle instead.

 

It is the season of culfests in colleges, but ever since Gujarat University (GU) banned celebration of days where students would go wild celebrating Rose Day’, Chocolate Day’ and Saree Day’, colleges are brimming with celebrations of socially relevant issues. So, Saturday will be celebrated as Environment Day’.
 

“I will come on cycle that day. This is the perfect way to sensitise students towards growing problems of air pollution and depleting energy reserves,” said Mahipatsinh Chavda, principal of LD Arts College, who feels that the ban on frivolous days has come as a blessing in disguise as students are suddenly organising events that promote social awareness.

 

One of the students expresses his plan this way. I am going to tell my father to use solvent recovery systems with the use of solvent recyclers and cleaning systems in his company. This is the way I am going to give my contribution on environment day.

 

The season may have begun on a rough note with action against HLBBA for violating the ban by hosting a fashion show. However, most colleges are adhering to celebration of days that give them the opportunity to celebrate but not with exchange of roses and chocolates. Rather, they will dwell on larger and more important issues like terrorism, environment, peace and even general sensitivity towards social issues.
 

LD College will also be celebrating Role Model Day’, where students will dress up like their role model. A special certificate will also be given to the best performers.
 

Anti-terrorism Day’ was celebrated at KS School of Business Management on Monday. As part of the celebrations, students took a pledge to prevent spread of terrorism in the country. Students of LJ Arts and Commerce College too will celebrate this day, wherein they will exchange their views over terrorism.
 

At Shahjanand College, students will celebrate Environment Day’, National Unity Day’ and Save the Girl Child Awareness Day’.

“The highlight of the event would be the Home Food Day’ where students will bring home-cooked food and share it with others,” a student said.


“Our students will visit orphanages and sing for the elderly as part of the Winter Day’ celebrations. I think it is a very touching idea, better than just dressing up and not doing anything thoughtful for society,” said Jean D’Souza of HA College of Arts and Commerce.


“Initially, we thought that culfests would not be the same without the usual celebrations, but we find the new celebrations mentally very stimulating,” said Jaimin Shah, a second-year student.
 

ref: thetimesofindia

Pollution could be turning you obese

Good morning friends.  Many of us knows that pollution has bee as any significant change in the physical, chemical or biological characteristics of the air, water and land that many negatively affect mankind, whether directly by being harmful to people or indirectly by causing natural resources to deteriorate. 

A pollutant might be triggering obesity by influencing gene activity, according to a new study.  

For example tributyltin, a chemical is used in antifouling paints for boats, as a wood and textile preservative, and as a pesticide on high-value food crops, among many other applications.

Tributyltin affects sensitive receptors in animal cells, from water fleas to humans, at very low concentrations – a thousand times lower than pollutants that are known to interfere with sexual development of wildlife species.

Tributyltin and its relatives are highly toxic to snails, causing female snails to develop male sexual characteristics, and it bioaccumulates in fish and shellfish.

The harmful effects of the chemical on the liver  and the nervous and immune systems in mammals are well known, but its powerful effects on the cellular components known as retinoid X receptors (RXRs) in a range of species are a recent discovery.

When activated, RXRs can migrate into the nuclei of cells and switch on genes that cause the growth of fat storage cells and regulate whole body metabolism — compounds that affect a related receptor often associated with RXRs are now used to treat diabetes.

RXRs are normally activated by signalling molecules found throughout the body.

Taisen Iguchi and Yoshinao Katsu of the Graduate University for Advanced Studies in Japan described how RXRs and related receptors are also strongly activated by tributyltin and similar chemicals.

Tributyltin impairs reproduction in water fleas through its effects on a receptor similar to the RXR. In addition, tributyltin causes the growth of excess fatty tissue in newborn mice exposed to it in the womb.

The effects of tributyltin on RXR-like nuclear receptors might therefore be widespread throughout the animal kingdom.

The rise in obesity in humans over the past 40 years parallels the increased use of industrial chemicals over the same period.

Iguchi and Katsu maintain that it is “plausible and provocative” to associate the obesity epidemic to chemical triggers present in the modern environment.

The study appeared in BioScience.

ref: thetimesofindia