Biggest pollutants in the world

One thing I wonder, that I might be dead before I ever learn, is if the disappearance of oil will reduce or undo what damage we have already done to the world environmentally.

Biggest pollutants in the world

  1. Pesticides
  2. Lead-acid car batteries
  3. Industry and vehicles
  4. Open sewers
  5. Industrial waste (mining, lead, copper, zinc)
  6. Chromium (for stainless steel and tanning hides)
  7. Groundwater (from pesticides and mining waste)
  8. Mercury

(Source)

Unfortunately, most of these pollutants are found in poverty-stricken developing countries.

How well do environmental regulations work in improving the environment?

Since the 1970’s, more and more regulations and been places on air quality. This has resulted in a 2.6% declines in pollution levels, also known as total factor productivity levels.

The regulations on ozone depletion, while having “large negative effects on productivity,” thought sulfur dioxide emitters have reduced in number.

Carbon monoxide regulations have increased pollution, especially among refineries.

The total decline in pollution due to these regulations is estimated at 4.8%, and has reduced plant profits by about 8.8%.

While it doesn’t seem very effective, is it better to place the environmental regulations on businesses, even if it reduces the pollution by so little?

I think so. Even the small reduction in environmental pollution and the large loss in profits, I think it is the moral and ethical decision that should transcend cost, in this instance.