Air pollution and pollution in general has always been a concern with various government and environmental groups since the ozone layer was discovered to be depleting in the early 1970’s. Since this discovery many governments around the world have stepped up to the plate to protect the environment and the ozone layer. Auto industry pollution plays a large role in the overall amount of pollution on the earth and in the atmosphere.
History of Auto Industry Air Pollution
The auto industry has had long ties with pollution and environmental groups because of the way vehicles burn fuel and the amount of waste and pollution they put out. The early vehicles were notorious for having very high amounts of pollution, but the government hadn’t established any regulations limiting the amount of pollution put out by vehicles.
In the 1970’s and 80’s there were many government and industry led interventions that reduced the amount of pollution being emitted by vehicles. Auto factories were also the source of concern as they often emitted a lot of pollution by their own right. Detroit, Michigan was notorious for being one of the highest polluted cities in the country because of the number of car manufacturers that operated in the city. Catalytic converters and more efficient muffler innovations further cut down on pollution, but it still remained a big problem for the auto industry to overcome.
What’s Being Done
Government intervention, especially in the United States started to take place to reduce the amount of auto industry pollution in the air and ground. Lead pollution and mercury pollution are almost entirely caused by vehicles, which has led to a great deal of concern when the deadliness of these chemicals are taken into mind. Governments began mandating for higher fuel efficiency in vehicles, with the intention of reducing the total amount of fuel being burned each year. While this had some effect, the changes aren’t expected to be completed until 2020 at the earliest.
Another strategy used by governments and auto industry leaders was to increase the number of hybrid and electric cars in production. While these cars still cause emission and secondary pollution, they cause much less auto industry pollution than vehicles with an internal combustion engine. While the amount of pollution is being cut each year, more vehicles are also being built each year, which further increases the problem of auto industry pollution.
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