China has become a hot spot for ground-level ozone pollution

People in China breathe in the thick air which has lungs damaging pollutant ozone which is around two to six times more often than people living in Europe, the United States, Japan as per a recent assessment. By one of the metric, the total number of days with daily maximum average ozone values of around 8 hours average is even greater than the 70 ppb. China had six times more ozone days than Europe, twice more than Japan and South Korea and three times more than the United States.

Lin Zhang from the Peking University mentioned that “We have found that in the urban regions of eastern and central China having the very high population, there are even more than 60 days in a calendar year which is having surface ozone level even moiré than the Chinese national ozone air quality standard.” Zhang is also the lead author of the study currently being conducting on the issue of Environmental Science and Technology Letters.

One of the co-authors of the research paper Owen Cooper said that “China has now become a hot spot for the present day surface ozone pollution “human and vegetation exposure of China is even greater than what various well-developed regions of the world have.”

Different countries have regulated the ozone and the reason behind this is the harm and damage which is caused to plants and people because of the pollutants. For an example, in the US the present health-based standard related to ground level ozone which is decided and set by the US Environmental Protection Agency is about 70 ppb based on a maximum of 8 hours on an average on daily basis. For the Chinese national ozone air quality is about 80 ppb based on maximum daily basis 8 hours.

This ground level ozone is usually formed when the organic compound of volatile nature and the nitrogen oxides reacts in the atmosphere when sunlight is also present. The major sources of the nitrogen oxides and the organic compounds of the volatile nature are fossil fuels burning and biomass burning. Since the 1990s there have been tighter controls imposed on the emissions of the ingredients have led to the significant decrease in the ozone pollution is many of the US as well as European cities. The level of surface ozone pollution in China have not been recognized widely, according to the researchers this is because there were few Chinese monitoring sites before the year 2012.