We Must Take Action to Improve the Air Quality in Phoenix
"How You Can Clean the Filthy Air You Breathe in Phoenix"
Take a deep breath, Phoenicians. How did it feel? Most likely, it felt good. But did you know that you are breathing air that is unnecessarily polluted? Did you know that by taking a few steps in the right direction, you could breathe worry-free? While Phoenix and Maricopa County have done much in the past few years in controlling the air pollution, there needs to be more action in order to secure clean air in the long-term. There are two things we can do: implement programs from another city with a pollution problem like ours, and take matters directly into our own hands by changing our lifestyle to positively affect the air quality.
Los Angeles is one such city that has had some success in controlling its air pollution, with plans that are different from the ones Phoenix is using. Located in the Sunbelt, LA sees a lot of sunshine like Phoenix. It, too, has had a large population growth like Phoenix and has had to respond to that accordingly. Los Angeles has developed a few excellent plans to fight its air pollution, which I believe can also make a difference in Phoenix as well. I propose that we integrate those plans from Los Angeles to enhance the battle of air pollution in Phoenix.
For the second part of my plan, I propose that we all take individual action to make the air quality better for ourselves and everyone else, like driving less and not topping off the gas tank. By encouraging local lawmakers to use the effective plans of Los Angeles and by actively taking strides in combating the battle of air pollution in our daily lives, the breaths we take can soon be of clean, healthy air.
In the meantime, however, our air is becoming more dangerous. Thanks to our location in a valley with minimal winds, most of the vehicle emissions stay with us, trapped within the mountains. It lingers and increases the ozone level and carbon monoxide level, which leads to a nice layer of haze blanketing the city.
Our desert climate only worsens the problem by adding intense heat much of the time, which accelerates the creation of haze. The irony here is that Phoenix has a large population growth due to the "prettiness" of the city. Little do these immigrants know that they are only fostering a significant problem, which will eventually make Phoenix ugly and virtually unlivable!
Air pollution is divided into two different categories: primary (which include carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, and particulates) and secondary (which are primary pollutants that react with other primary pollutants are atmospheric compounds, like water) (Gulbinas 1).
To better understand how our air is polluted in our vehicles, it is imperative to know what is exactly polluting our air and where it comes from. There are six major sources of air pollution: