Assessment of local pollution influence on the weather and impact on the air quality over subtropical southern Africa

M. Wiston • M. Montsho
Journal article International Journal of Environment, Agriculture and Biotechnology • February 2018 South Africa • Zambia

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(English, 17 pages)


This study discusses the possible role of air pollution and influence on air quality (AQ) and weather over southern Africa. Although it has long been thought that a lotof pollution occurs in the industrialized regions of the Northern Hemisphere, it is quite clear that a vast amount is also generated in the south, and southern Africa contributes significantly. Since industrial revolution, the sub-continent has become one of the major sources of atmospheric emissions mainly from human-induced activities to meet demand for energy supply and other lifelong needs. The main sources include biomass burning (BB), Aeolian dust and industrial emissions. In the process, trace components generated can negatively impact the atmosphere through aerosol influence on cloud properties and radiation budget, and also affect human health. While anthropogenic emissions are enhanced during winter, natural emissions occur and fluctuate throughout the year. In the case of dust aerosols, they are common over the Kalahari-Namib Desert where dust devils frequently develop overland, keeping the air filled with haze.Commongas pollutants include carbon monoxide (CO), sulphur-and nitrogen oxides(SOxand NOx) from the copper belt(Zambia),Highveld(South Africa), BB-dominated areas and other isolated locations. In particular, a high degree of correlation between weather and pollution in urban source centers and the effect of weather on human health are of special interest. In most cases, humans are exposed to high pollutant levels likely exceeding AQ standards. We propose that more attention should be paid to the rapidly increasing regional pollution levels, as experience from other regions suggest that this can alter climate and AQ composition.




International Journal of Environment, Agriculture and Biotechnology

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