Second Hand(Exhaust)Smoke: Negative Effect Of Car Emissions

Before you rev your engines, keep in mind the negative effects of car emissions.

Cars have become one of the most common possessions on the face of the planet. With the constant growth in the international economy, cars are becoming more affordable and easier for the average person to own. People need transportation in order to go back and forth to work, to take their children to school, and to carry out everyday activities.

car pollutions

The reality, however, is that this sudden influx in cars on the road has a major side effect. According to the United States Department of Transportation, in 1970, there were 89.9 billion vehicle miles traveled. In 2011, this number almost tripled to 246.3 trillion vehicle miles traveled ( With these high numbers, the negative effects of car emissions is clear.

While vehicle ownership is beneficial and even necessary to those dependent on cars for their primary transportation, recent research done by the Environmental Protection Agency in the United States concluded that emissions from these vehicles are responsible for more than half of air pollution in the U.S. In addition to air pollution, cars carry hazardous fluids and these harmful fluids can drain into and, thus, negatively effecting the local water system. (Image source)

While a car is running, it is emitting chemicals in the form of gas. Some of these chemicals are harmless, but others are not. The amount and type of pollution depends upon what type of gas goes into the car. In the US, all grades of gasoline are unleaded, and the consumer can choose which grade to put into their car. This varies from country to country, as in some places, not all the gasoline is only unleaded.

Gasoline that contains lead is extremely harmful to the environment and to people. When breathed in, leaded gasoline fumes can slow brain development in small children and potentially cause cancer in adults(USEPA). It is important to make sure that the gasoline that is being put in your car does not contain lead, because if it does, it can be very hazardous to you and the surrounding environment. The lead gas being put into many vehicles is just one of the many negative effects of car emissions.

There are certain chemicals, however, that are emitted from all gas-powered vehicles, regardless of the type of gasoline the owner fuels it with. These chemicals are carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, sulfur oxide, and smaller solid particles such as metal and soot (

These materials are less harmful to humans than lead, but just as harmful to the surrounding environment. Many of these pollutants settle into the soil and find their way into the food supply. Animals that consume these foods can suffer from respiratory, immune, and neurological complications. (image source)

Car pollution is responsible for much more than sickening the wildlife. Nitrogen oxide and sulfur emissions from car pollution have been directly linked to the causation of acid rain. Acid rain is caused when these chemicals are leaked or emitted from car exhaust fumes, then absorbed by the water supply or soil. Once the chemicals are in the water, they evaporate into the clouds and from there, fall to the earth as acid rain. One of the negative effects of car emissions that circulates through the water cycle will continuously harm our environment until changes are made to reduce emissions.

The drastic rise in car ownership has affected the environment in many negative ways, but oddly enough, the emissions released from cars do not have a huge impact on the ozone layer. This is a common misconception and, although car pollution is horrible for humans and wildlife, it does not destroy the ozone.

The automobile is one of man’s greatest inventions, in part because of the freedom that it gives us on the road. It also allows us to prosper economically due to the ease of delivery methods of goods and services. Because of vehicles, we have the advantage of moving across our country faster than ever before.

electric car

However, we must not forget that cars have their disadvantages, such as exhaust fumes and fluid leaks that are potentially harmful to our environment and wildlife. Our responsibility as consumers is to become more conscious of the damage that our car is doing to the environment and the negative effects of car emissions on both humans and animals.

Something we can do to lessen the impact of harmful by-products of car pollution is to promote production of “greener” vehicles. (image source)

When we begin to choose a hybrid or electric car over the standard, the transportation market will be forced to shift their focus to production of hybrid and electric cars. In recent years, the vehicle market has undergone innovation and is moving towards a greener future. In order to make the roads greener and make a reduction in the negative effects of car emissions seen globally, we must follow this example and become more aware of the harm we are causing to the environment.

Now, every one of us has a role to improve society and we need to take action. The first action we take is always to suggest to go green to reduce the negative effects of car emissions. According to Environmental America the amount of pollution emitted in to the environment by fossil fueled generation plants is three times more than all the nation’s cars. [quote_box_center]U.S. power plants released 2.56 billion tons of carbon dioxide, equivalent to the amount produced by 449 million of today’s cars – that’s more than three times the number of passenger cars registered in the United States[/quote_box_center]. For that reason, if you have not yet switched to green, DO it now. Take Action and Click the link to GO GREEN NOW!

Originally Posted:


How cities Can Reduce Energy Consumption

American Power and Gas: One of the primary characteristics of cities is population density. The amount of people living per square mile is much greater in urban areas. This is because cities are major centers of commerce and industry. They are the home base for many domestic and international companies.

High concentrations of jobs in cities attract even more people. Many of these folks commute from their homes outside the city to their places of employment. Between the power required to operate city businesses and residences, and the fuel needed for public transportation and vehicles used to get around, energy consumption levels in cities are very high. It is very important that cities start to cut back. Below are 6 ways in which they can do it.

Bicycle Lanes and Sharing

When cities invest in protected bicycle lanes on the roads, people will feel safer riding their bikes in lieu of driving. Cities can also offer bike sharing services. Citi Bike in New York City or Biketown in Portland, Oregon enable people to pay for and temporarily use a local bike. Together, these changes reduce car density on the road, and, in turn, decrease energy consumption.

Public Transit

Public Transit

Arguably one of the more costly and complex solutions to reduce energy consumption in cities is by offering and maintaining a variety of public transportation options. This should dissuade people from driving. Bus, subway or rail lines facilitate better and faster commutes. They simultaneously diminish the reliance on cars and, in effect, the reliance on gasoline.

Hybrid Cars

Since some cities, such as Los Angeles, are more reliant on driving than others. Offering higher and more incentivizing tax breaks to individuals who choose to drive hybrid or electric cars encourages its citizens be more energy conscious. To further reward these drivers, they can encourage certain establishments to offer designated, premium parking spaces for those vehicles in particular.

Green Space

Plants and trees reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the air by utilizing energy from the sun. Creating concentrated pockets of green space throughout a city in the form of parks, playgrounds, urban farms, and open spaces provide a better quality of life for city dwellers. In addition, they will better the atmosphere by cooling the surrounding air, offsetting carbon dioxide.

Solar Panels

Skyscrapers and massive buildings are staples of urban life. By installing solar panels, which absorb light from the sun, on even some of these structures, the city would be able to tap into free energy in the form of generating electricity or heating during daytime hours. This would make the best use of an enormous and pre-existing surface area. It will also cut back on the amount of fossil fuel people use.

Waste Management

Water Conservation

Cities are overflowing with people. As a result, the amount of garbage produced daily is extremely overwhelming. The management and disposal are not always the most efficient. Small efforts can better eliminate waste. One of these efforts is to outlaw plastic bag distribution in stores since they do not decompose. Also, if more opportunities existed for people to recycle, fewer recyclable materials would arrive in landfills and could, instead, be repurposed.

Water Conservation

More people equates to more water consumption. Therefore, there is more water waste. Cities can offer energy-efficient programs. They can help people purchase water-saving devices for their homes. They can also incentivize them to do so with tax breaks. There are low-flow faucets, toilets, and shower heads. There are also water saving dishwashers and washing machines. These appliances use significantly less water than older, more outdated models.

There has been a drastic climate change that has occurred over the past century. It is due to carbon dioxide emissions and diminishes natural resources.  It is imperative that populous regions like cities begin to reduce their consumption of energy.

Offering an array of public transportation options, provide bike sharing services and delineate bike lanes on the roads. They can incentivize drivers of hybrid and electric cars. They can create sustainable green spaces, and install solar panels on the tallest buildings. These things will all reduce waste and conserve water. Although local governments are responsible for implementing these tactics, it is ultimately up to the people to make sure they follow it.