The impact of air pollution on the social and economic development in Nigeria is a topic of interest to scientists/researchers. A good number of researchers have documented this event (Abiodun, 1999; Ebisike et al, 2004 and Obioh et al, 2005). Historical events have been documented by other studies in which pollution concentrations reached an alarming level due to weather inversion that trapped air pollution in valleys. A good example is the Meuse valley of Belgium in 1930 and London of 1952 where thousands loss their lives due to air pollution (Holland et al, 1979). The release of methyl isocyanate into the air during a temperature inversion causes 3,300 deaths and more than 20,000 ...view middle of the document...
Enormous amount of financial resources which could be used for economic and social development are being loss on a daily basis by government and weather-sensitive economic sectors resulting from this extreme weather phenomenon.
This paper aim at enlighten the general populace of the effect of air pollution on the socio-economic development in Nigeria. And, also to stress the need for decision makers at all level in government and in all sectors of society to consistently integrate environmental objectives along with social and economic considerations in their decision.
Pollution, a form of weather condition is the presence of one or more contaminable substances in the atmosphere resulting from gaseous, liquid or solid wastes or by-products that is detrimental or tends to be detrimental to human health or welfare, or can attack infrastructures. Air pollution on the other hand refers to the discharge of harmful substances into the air to the extent that it can reduce visibility or produce undesirable odour.
Air pollution results from both the natural and anthropogenic causes. The emissions from volcanoes, desert dust storms, sea spray, plants (spores and pollens) and smoke from forest fires which constitutes particulate matters are natural causes of air pollution. Anthropogenic (man-made) sources which include industrial plants (figure 1), motor vehicles, power generation, mining, smoke emissions from bush burning, quarrying, gas from waste/refuse combustion, agricultural sprays and chemical processing, exerts higher proportion than the natural factors. Anthropogenic pollutants are the most toxic and are generally emitted where people live, work and play. It typically causes the greatest health problem and exacerbates respiratory problems and other health complications (figure 2).
Air pollution’s impact on health is very complex as there are many different sources. The individual effects vary from one to another, and it is especially harmful to the young children and the elderly, and those with existing respiratory problems. Children are at risk because their lungs are not fully developed; they breath faster, and they spend lots of time outdoors (Kenneth et al, 1999).
Air pollution is widely considered to be one of the serious threats to the sustainability of the planet’s environment, the well being of its people and the economic power. The world’s economy is increasing sensitivity to weather; hence it is not possible to divorce the environment and the socio-economic issues. Based on this, there is need to consider the effect of pollution extremes on some of the weather-sensitive economic sectors.
Changes to the environmental features will have a direct impact on many tourism destinations which could have far reaching implications not just for the tourism industry, but for other economic sectors. Air pollution put tourism at risk at coastal zones and mountain regions. Coastal tourism is likely to suffer damage...