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Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)
Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)
Siarhei Tamasheuski avatar
Written by Siarhei Tamasheuski
Updated over a week ago

Nitrogen dioxide is a toxic gas that greatly affects air quality. It is a cause of acid rain, which has a harmful effect on sensitive habitats and biodiversity. It’s also a catalyst leading to the formation of smog and other pollutants, including ozone and particulate matter.

Where does it come from?

The primary source of NO2 is from burning fossil fuels - coal, oil, diesel, and gas.

Burning fuel at high temperatures in engines, gas heaters, cookers, and industrial machinery produces nitrogen monoxide. When released into the air, the nitrogen monoxide combines with oxygen to form nitrogen dioxide.

N + O = NO + O + NO2

So NO2 is formed from emissions from cars, trucks, buses, power plants and any other equipment that is powered by fossil fuels.

What are its effects?

NO2 irritates the lungs and increases symptoms of respiratory infection and asthma. It is strongly linked with emphysema, bronchitis, and heart disease. Children and older people are more likely to be affected. They can develop respiratory infections and can be susceptible to increased allergic reactions.

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