Not too many people catch a ship to work or sit in a congested shipping lane during peak hour, sucking in all the fumes through their air conditioning. So when most people think of fuel fumes, they think of all pollution oozing out of the millions of cars, trucks and buses on the roads.
An Associated Press article reported that a study in the American Chemical Society found that in 2002, almost 60,000 people who lived in coastal areas along the world’s major shipping routes died from heart and lung complications due to the high sulfate emissions from ships. The report also concludes that the death toll could rise up to 82,000 by the year 2012.
“Ship pollution affects the health of communities in coastal and inland regions around the world, yet pollution from ships remain one of the least regulated parts of our global transportation system,” said Dr. James Corbett who is a co-author of the report.
“There are a lot of observations made from data to suggest a very strong association between sulfur, air pollution, including marine pollution, and premature deaths from respiratory problems like chronic lung failure,” T.W. Wong professor of medicine at the Chinese University of Hong Kong told the AP.
“If ships switched to cleaner fuels, it would help save lives,” he said.
This is not really surprising, you don’t need binoculars to see the fumes that billow out of the ships, and even if your eyesight isn’t up to par, you can most certainly smell it. And I’m not talking about one of the major shipping ports in Asia either.
I love the beach, sand under my feet, the sea breeze blowing through my hair… what doesn’t go with this scenario is one of those pollution masks. Diesel ships burn some of the dirtiest fuel in existence, but there is an answer to cleaning up the fuel… check out the following link Green Plus.