• Global issue
• Sri Lankan air quality
• Contributors to air pollution
• Challenges facing
• Sources of air pollution
• Major types of air pollution
• Air quality index
• Particulate matter
• Health hazards
• Cost of action
• Course of failure
3. Global Issue..!
• Global warming: The world’s average surface temperature is likely to
surpass 3 degrees centigrade this century.
• Killer: 2012 around 7 million people died - one in eight of total global
• Life expectancy : Research from the University of Chicago suggests
global life expectancy is cut by two years as a result of particulate
matter air pollution.
• Health cost: Representing 0.3% of world GDP in health costs, as well
as reducing productivity at work.
4. According to WHO...
“contamination of the indoor or outdoor environment by any chemical,
physical or biological agent that modifies the natural characteristics of
5. Why I’ve choose this topic?
• Sri Lanka comes 11th out of 34 in cleanest Asian countries
• Sri lanka pollution index is 56.92
• National Burden !!!
• Respiratory diseases are immense 45%
• Pneumonia and influenza leading cause of death
• Industrial > Rural
• Kandy: highly air polluted city
• Motor vehicles: 55-60%
• 20-25% is due to industries
• 20% is from domestic sources
(Ministry of Environment 2011)
• Air quality is deteriorating
• This cause immense health problems
• It can affect economy : tourist revenue, investors
9. Major air pollutants
Class of pollutants Examples
Oxides of carbon CO2, CO
Oxides of nitrogen NO2, NO
Oxides of sulphur SO2, SO3
Particulate matter Soot, PM10
Inorganic compounds Pb
Photochemical smog O3, PeroxyacylNitrate
Hydrocarbons C6H6, Benzopyrene
10. Ambient air pollution
• Also called criteria
• Especially in urban
from a spectrum of
different sources, which
are broadly classified as
stationary, mobile, and
area emission sources.
12. Air Quality Index (AQI)
• Index for reporting daily air
• Measure how clean or
polluted the air is
• The AQI focuses on health
effects we experience
within a few hours or days
after breathing polluted air
13. Air quality monitoring
• Air Quality Monitoring Station is in Colombo Fort, since 1997 to
monitor ambient air quality on a continuous basis
• The average annual ambient PM 10 level in Colombo over the years
have remained relatively stable: 72 to 80 μg/m3
• WHO recommends an AQI level < 25 safe human.
• AQI (Colombo) = 153
14. Why pollution level increasing
• Increasing number of motor cycle vehicles
• Poor quality of fuel
• Industrial pollutants
• Over loaded trucks and buses
• Traffic congestions
• Increasing use of thermal power plants
• Incineration of waste materials
16. Health effects of air pollution
• CO : make it hard for body parts to get the oxygen need ,
exposure to CO makes feel dizzy, tired and headache. In high
concentrations its fatal.
• NO2 : cough make them feel short of breath. Increase the chances
for respiratory infections. Cause acid rain which can harm plants
• SO2 : Exposure to this can affect people with asthma and
emphysema by making more difficult to breathe. Causing
irritates peoples eyes, noses and throats.
17. Health effects
• Ozone : Near ground can cause number of health
problems. Cause frequent asthma, lead to premature
death. Also hurt plant and animals
• Smog : affects plant life and the health of the animals
and humans. Lead to bronchial diseases. Cause rickets
low production of vitamin D. inflammation in tissues
18. Particulate matter
• The fine particles emitted, specially from diesel
• vehicles having particulate size diameter of less than
10µm known as the PM10 fraction.
• Extremely hazardous.
• Health damage cost around Rs.32 billion in Colombo
alone (Prof.Amal kumarage, UoM )
19. Particulate matter
Where do they come from ?
• Automobile exhaust fumes
• Forest and domestic fires
• Soil and rock debris
• Indoor cooking using firewood
• Sea salt
20. Health effects
• Aggravates asthma
• Respiratory problems
• Silicosis and asbestosis
• Heart diseases
• Lead poisoning
• Interferes with cleaning mechanism of lungs
21. Course of action
• Strictly enforce emission testing for all vehicles
including CTB buses, lorries, vans etc
• Limit the import of three wheelers and motorbikes
which are the worst polluters.
• Improve the quality of diesel.
• One way traffic has considerably lessened the air
pollution in some areas of the Colombo city.
• Establish, adhere and enforce air quality standards.
• Invest in renewable energy.
• Provide clean cooking and heating stoves to rural
• Switch from kerosene lamps to clean lightening
• Don’t openly burn waste.
22. Costs of failure
• A sick population and increased health costs.
• COPD among the children, lost school days due to
asthma, heart problems for the elderly and risks of
• Loss of tourist revenue and eventually the world
heritage status for Kandy.
Generating base line data related to indoor and outdoor air pollutants
and human health will form the platform to address this problem at
national, community and individual level.
The lack of proper air quality monitoring system to track human
exposure to is a major limitation. This has to be addressed and take
Establishing a modern ambient air quality monitoring systems at least
covering major cities.
Identifying new mitigation strategies and implementing.