The major car pollutants are carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, nitrous oxides, carbon dioxide and particulates. Most pollutants come from the exhausts but brake pads, tires, oil, grease, anti-freeze, hydraulic fluids, and a number of cleaning agents can also contribute pollutants to the environment

Toxic Air Pollution Worse in Stop/Start Traffic
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While the government does monitor pollutants, these measurements bear little resemblance to the pollution you and your family experience while moving through daily life. EPA also requires that measured concentrations of regulated pollutants be averaged to determine compliance with standards. Especially in the case of Particulate matter (soot), for example, which can damage health.

Although we have grown to accept the smell of engine exhaust pollution as a part of our everyday life. This is


particularly hazardous to people, especially for those who live close to congested roads,  with serious illnesses, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and lung cancer. There are thousands of people who suffer from these illnesses. Children, the elderly, those with compromised immune systems, and those with specific genetic traits are at special risk. During the past decade, scientists have also confirmed a relationship between two forms of pollution—ozone and particulate matter—and increased rates of mortality, especially among those with cardiovascular disease.

The size of these tiny particles are directly linked to the trouble they cause. Particles smaller than a speck of dust and less than 1/30 the width of a human hair that can easily pass through the nose and throat, penetrate and embed in the lungs and enter the bloodstream. The smallest of particles cause the largest amount of damage because they can penetrate furthermost into the lungs and in some cases can react with DNA. The particle matter, or PM, as it is often called can be so small that it can only  be detected by an electronic microscope. These particles enter our lungs without our ever knowing it.

Eastern Freeway Gridlock
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Experts have found that sitting in traffic gridlock will drastically increase the chance you will breathe in toxic fumes – by as much as 76 per cent. So great is the concern over the impact of pollution on our health, experts at the World Health Organisation (WHO) have ranked outdoor air pollution among the top 10 health risks faced by humans, linking the problem to seven million premature deaths each year.


Electric Cars – Clean Air
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Electric vehicles could dramatically reduce air pollution from our transportation system, and improve our air Quality.

Producing the electricity to power electric vehicles can generate emissions but those emissions levels are far lower than the pollution emitted by conventional vehicles, and could be even lower as the electric power sector itself cleans up its act over the next few decades.


  1. Robin says:

    It is frustrating when you hear our politicians describing trace gas carbon dioxide as “carbon pollution” when they know it is vital to the survival of the earth’s ecosystem. There is no mention of all these nasty airborne materials from road traffic that are directly effecting our health.

    • Pandy's Son says:

      I would not call it a pollutant either but it is dangerous if we have to much of it. We should be doing everything we can to limit carbon dioxide and that must include replanting the world’s trees we have cut down and address the earth’s burgeoning population. Trees and plants are part of the cycle, extra CO2 means plant and trees will thrive and give off oxygen which is also vital to all beings. I believe electric cars to be the answer to air pollution and it won’t be long before the combustion engine is replaced and we have cleaner air again in our cities.

  2. Anonomye says:

    Retired after working 40 years in the city of Melbourne. I loved the work but hated spending, in recent years, a total of up to 80 minutes to get there and home again every day of the week. The answer to our traffic problems could be to somehow introduce compulsory car pooling in peak periods instead of one person driving a large four wheel drive. Travelling times would be cut in half as would the number of cars on the road. The petrol companies would not like it so much because of the reduced fuel consumption and would prefer you suffer the health issues associated with peak hour driving, such as high blood pressure anxiety etc, due to having to hack your way to work every day through the murky and foul polluted air.

  3. Isabel says:

    “One quarter of all global deaths of children under five are caused by polluted environments”. ”Children’s developing organs and immune systems, and smaller bodies and airways, make them especially vulnerable to dirty air and water”.

  4. No Name says:

    My wife had worked almost 40 kilometres from our home in East Doncaster, but resigned due to asthma brought on by the fumes from driving in heavy traffic and the stress which caused her insomnia. Total travelling time per day was about 80 minutes of hard driving which also took its toll on the well being of our family. There was a bus leaving from Doncaster at Westfield which was not an option because she would have had to catch the Bus at about 7am in order to get to work on time because it took almost twice as long compared to travelling by car.

  5. Reg says:

    The traffic on the two arterial roads running slap bang through the Doncaster Hill activity centre, most of it having no association with the area, is regularly in gridlock and spewing toxic fumes into the air. Unfortunately there is no possibility of constructing a bypass road because of the haphazard nature of the local street layout

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