Transportation is one of the world's leading causes of pollution. In many urban areas, as much as 90 percent of the pollutants in the air come from motor vehicles alone. And this pollution, which consists of both gases and airborne particles, has a number of negative effects. It causes illnesses, respiratory problems in particular, but it's also damaging to the environmental balance of the planet. Carbon emissions from cars is believed to be a major cause of global warming. Most of the smog hanging over major cities is caused by transportation.
Most of this pollution is caused by the burning of fuel in internal combustion engines (ICEs), which are still the major power source behind cars, trucks, buses and most other forms of non-electric transportation. In the 21st century we are seeing a gradual movement away from ICEs and toward less polluting power sources, but it will be years before we cease to be dependent on polluting fuels to get us from place to place. What are some solutions we can take in the meantime to decrease the quantity of noxious gases and particulate matter that we're throwing into the atmosphere? On the following pages, we'll look at 10 possibilities, many of which you can adopt right now.