Pollution “Solutions” that are Doing more Harm then Good

Emma Galesic, Editor

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 Creating ways that we can help our environment is a great habit to start due to how much man-made pollution there currently is; instead, there are actually some solutions that are causing more harm than good to our environment. Some of which are sending trash into space, self-cleaning pollution control technology, and biodegradable products such as water bottles.

It is unquestionable that air pollution is beginning to take over in different places of the world, and as a result, it has been linked to many things including different paints and coatings on buildings. One of the solutions that they came up with for this issue was “self-cleaning” paints and building surfaces. On the other hand, they are causing more problems for our environment. According to the website, Science Daily, titanium dioxide coatings on buildings (which is what paints are made of)  convert abundant ammonia to nitrogen oxide. Nitrogen oxide can cause many environmental and health issues when exposed to sun light and can cause respiratory problems in humans as well. It is also a cause of pollution and other environmental problems.

Some people have had the idea to send trash into space and drop it off near the sun and all of the trash on earth will be gone. But, sending trash to space has its drawbacks. For one, rocket launches are very expensive. Space launches can average to about $57 million dollars. Humans produce so much garbage, it would take hundreds of rocket launches to be completely trash free on Earth, especially when considering that we continue to produce even more trash. Unfortunately, by sending trash into space, it could even cause pollution in space. Space pollution is caused when trash is in space and stuck in the orbit around the sun or other planets, and can also eventually pollute the other planets around it. There are even already space debris that are causing this without the help of sending trash to space, because of debris that come off of spacecraft during a launch. Which, is another reason why it is a bad idea to send trash to space.

Another step that has been taken to help prevent environmental pollution caused by humans is the invention of biodegradable, single-use water bottles. The first issue with this idea is that these bottles often only degrade in highly controlled environments with a high enough average temperature and moisture levels. With any other environment it is very hard for the microbes in the water bottles to break down. Also in most of biodegradable products such as water bottles, grocery bags, etc. there is still some amounts of plastic in them used as a binding between different materials. So, when the bottles and bags degrade, tiny particles of plastic are continuing to pollute the environment because they are much harder to clean up.

In the end, it is good to know what “solutions” to pollution are actually harming the environment that way we can avoid supporting them, and find much better ways to fight pollution that are actually helping. One of the best ways that is really helping the environment is by reducing the amount of disposable items you use on a daily basis and being more aware of how you are negatively impacting Earth.