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Effects of global climate change on local air quality
Air quality in Adelaide and regional centres is likely to decline with climate change as a result of increased temperatures and decreased humidity levels predicted for South Australia. Changes in weather patterns can increase frequency of drought; and if land is not properly managed and there are sufficiently strong winds, there can be an increase of dust in the air. Potential impacts of drought include an increased frequency and severity of bushfires and dust storms, adding to extreme air pollution events and resulting in higher levels of exposure to particles.
Higher temperatures are also expected to enhance production of photochemical smog, leading to higher levels exposures of people in metropolitan Adelaide to ground level ozone (not to be confused with ozone which is a natural part of the upper levels of the atmosphere).
Effects of local air pollution on global climate change
In turn, local air pollution feeds into global effects on climate through the emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide.
These gases help to trap heat from the Sun within the Earth’s atmosphere and maintain a temperature at a level necessary to support life. However an excess of greenhouse gases (ie. air pollution) from human activities can raise the temperature of the planet to abnormal levels, leading to climate change.
South Australian’s Greenhouse Strategy
Tackling Climate Change: South Australia’s Greenhouse Strategy 2007-2020 was released by the Premier on 31 May 2007 and is South Australia’s long-term response to climate change. It provides a series of innovative and comprehensive strategies to effectively address climate change.
More information about climate change and what you can do to reduce your impact on climate change (and air pollution) can be found at Tackling Climate Change in South Australia
Last modified: 24/01/2013 09:54 am