Sources of Air pollution

Sources of Air Pollution

Air pollution, harmful gases and particles in the air, comes from sources. Sources of air pollution can impact National Park Service (NPS) areas even though the vast majority of air pollution is created outside park boundaries. Learn more about sources of air pollution and transport by exploring the tabs below.

Types of Sources Transport Parks

Where does pollution come from?

There are four main types of air pollution sources:

mobile sources – such as cars, buses, planes, trucks, and trains
stationary sources – such as power plants, oil refineries, industrial facilities, and factories
area sources – such as agricultural areas, cities, and wood burning fireplaces
natural sources – such as wind-blown dust, wildfires, and volcanoes

Mobile sources account for more than half of all the air pollution in the United States and the primary mobile source of air pollution is the automobile, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Stationary sources, like power plants, emit large amounts of pollution from a single location, these are also known as point sources of pollution. Area sources are made up of lots of smaller pollution sources that aren’t a big deal by themselves but when considered as a group can be. Natural sources can sometimes be significant but do not usually create ongoing air pollution problems like the other source types can.

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