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Energy and Air Pollutants in Belgium

Publication Date Jan 1, 1991

Abstract

This paper discusses environmental concerns in Belgium about the emission of air pollutants from road vehicles, in relation to trends in energy consumption, exhaust emissions, and road traffic. In this context, five forms of atmospheric energy- related pollution, over three geographical ranges, continue to cause concern: (1) urban and local pollution from particulates and carbon monoxide (CO); (2) pollution at local and continental level from acid rain and photochemical effects; (3) pollution at global level from carbon dioxide (CO2) and other 'greenhouse gases'. The seven main air pollutants involved are: particulates, CO, CO2, volatile hydrocarbons (VOC), nitrogen oxides (NOx), nitrous oxide (NO2), and sulphur dioxide (SO2). Their emissions are a function of: (1) the quantity of fuel consumed; (2) the combustion systems used; (3) the conditions of combustion; (4) fuel composition; (5) any abatement technologies applied. Belgian energy consumption peaked in the 1970s, declined by about 12% to a low level in 1983, then gradually rose again to near its former peak. Charts detail the emissions of the seven main pollutants from different sources during 1980-88. They mostly show a similar mid-1980s minimum, but for some of them the 1988 emission is considerably below the 1980 level. Combustion in petrol engines mostly emits CO, VOC and NOx, whose negative effects are mainly local (in urban areas) and continental. For the covering abstract see IRRD 859338.

Concepts
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Main Pollutants
Greenhouse Gases
Trends In Energy Consumption
Volatile Hydrocarbons
Carbon Monoxide
Emission Of Air Pollutants
Nitrogen Oxides
Air Pollutants
Conditions Of Combustion
Continental Level

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