Local Sources of Air Pollution Activity
In the the hands-on activity, students will learn the sources of some common air pollutants by making pie charts showing the main sources of PM2.5, PM10, nitrogen dioxide (or nitrogen oxides) and sulfur dioxide for the United States as a whole, their state, and their county. They will generate explanations for the similarities and differences among the sources for different geographic areas.
Where do air pollutants come from?
What can we learn by comparing local sources of air pollution to national sources of air pollution?
TIME NEEDED: 90 minutes
Internet connection or hard copy of data
Paper or poster board
Colored pencils and markers
Round object for drawing circles
Molecule-making sets (optional)
TOPICS: air pollution in North Carolina, local air pollution, ground-level ozone, particulate matter
TYPES: data analysis, graphing
ESSENTIAL STANDARDS for Earth/Environmental Science:
EEn.2.5.1. Summarize the structure and composition of our atmosphere
EEn.2.5.5 Explain how human activities affect air quality
EEn 2.8.2. Critique conventional and sustainable agriculture and aquaculture practices in terms of their environmental impacts.
Air Pollution in NC Video
A video introduces the major pollution issues in North Carolina including ground-level ozone, particle pollution, acid deposition, mercury deposition, and nitrogen deposition; visits the North Carolina mountains, piedmont and coastal plain to learn about air pollution issues these regions and the sources of the air pollution. We hear from the NC Division of Air Quality Director, park rangers, a biomedical researcher, a county air quality official, a riverkeeper, and an air quality expert.
Video downloads are able to display subtitles. We recommend using VLC media player for optimal playback of subtitles.
Local Sources of Air Pollution - Teacher to Teacher Tips
The quick video below has tips for doing this activity from Mark Townley, an award-winning, North Carolina high school teacher. Mark helped develop It’s Our Air and has used each of these activities with his students.
OTHER MODULE 1 (AIR POLLUTANTS & THEIR SOURCES) ACTIVITIES AND VIDEOS
1-5 NC & Local Sources of Air Pollution (this activity)