When we think about air pollution, the one common issue is the contribution of gas emissions from the cars we use. Little did you know there may be bigger fish to fry when thinking about pollution facts.
The major source responsible for air pollution is asphalt. Yes, that’s right, it’s the roads we use.
Are you interested in learning more? If so then continue reading to find out the five things to know about asphalt pollution.
1. Pollution Facts: How Does Asphalt Pollution Work?
Asphalt is inescapable as many roads, roofs, and driveways depend on it to be built. But what is important to note is the unfortunate damage and pollution that it causes.
The chemical emissions that it gives off are bad for the environment. Studies show that asphalt is the main problem of pollution in many urban areas.
The sun radiates heat onto the asphalt causing chemical emissions to escape into the air.
2. Asphalt and Temperature Testing
Researchers are working to examine fresh pieces of asphalt and observe the effects seen in it when testing it under various temperatures.
The researchers place pieces into a furnace to study the emissions. Their studies show that the asphalt does in fact release mixtures of organic compounds into the air.
What the chemical emissions release is dependent on the temperature.
3. The Temperatures Causing Asphalt Pollution
During research and testing, slabs of asphalt are put into temperature conditions ranging between 40 degrees Celcius and 200 degrees Celcius.
When the temperature reaches 60 degrees Celcius, this causes the emission total to double.
This is also a standard temperature for asphalt on a hot summer day in California.
4. Aerosol Found in Asphalt Pollution
The organic compounds seen in asphalt pollution can lead to secondary organic aerosol.
This aerosol can form into small particles or PM 2.5, which is a damaging and dangerous type of air pollution that affects human health.
Unfortunately, this pollution is only increasing.
5. The Annual Emissions in Southern California
Researchers take estimates on the annual emissions from new pavement and roofing in Southern California. It is in their calculations that the asphalt molecules can release between 1,000 and 2,500 tons of air pollution.
This is more than gasoline which comparatively emits 900 to 1,400 tons.
Scientists must keep tracking how long asphalt emits molecules since these molecules are larger and it takes longer to escape.
The Importance of Knowing About Asphalt Pollution Facts
By gaining knowledge about asphalt pollution facts, you are more conscious of the environment around you. When research is conducted, this only brings hope for a cleaner and better future that isn’t full of toxic emissions.
It’s also positive to note that there are many substitutions for asphalt such as clay tiles or concrete. Hopefully, soon companies will learn how to create asphalt that contains fewer emissions.
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