WASHINGTON, Oct. 27 (Xinhua) — A study displayed that the U.S. government’s rollback of its climate change and energy policy would decrease the country’s air quality by increasing emissions of health destructive ozone.
The study printed in the latest edition of journal One Earth discovered that with the combination of loosened guidelines and a warming climate, 22 more U.S. counties would fail to meet the present ozone safety required in 2050.
Unlike ozone in the upper atmosphere, this protects the Earth from space radiation, ground-level ozone at high concentrations injured people’s respiratory functions and decreases crop yields.
In the past few decades, guidelines have prompted significant decreases in ground-level ozone. However, it remains one of the most problematic air pollutants to manage.
Shen Huizhong and his team from the Georgia Institute of Technology shaped a computer model to simulate how relaxing energy policies would impact ozone levels through 2050.
In their situation, they assumed that several U.S. energy policies, the Clean Power Plan, Production Tax Credit, Investment Tax Credit, and the Corporate Average Fuel Economy criterions on cars were relieved.
They found that relaxing energy policies would increase 6.5 percent more nitrogen oxides into the air compared to the situation with the current policies still in place. The nitrogen oxides are forerunners of ozone.
When the team took climate change into deliberation, the effect on ozone precursor emissions was even more considerable. A warmer climate will promote the release of volatile organic compounds, another ozone predecessor, by plants, rendering to the study.