- Automobiles, trucks and buses are considered to be major contributors when it comes to air pollution particulates.
- New York State consumers purchase 750,000 new cars each year.
- There are over 5,000 transit buses operating in New York City.
- Motor vehicle particle emissions and the particles formed by the transformation of gaseous emissions tend to be in the fine particle range.
- Fine particles (less than 2.5 micrometers) are of health concern primarily because they travel deepest into the lungs.
View of automobile exhaust. Samples generally consist of 1 micron or less carbon particles resulting from the incomplete combustion of gasoline and additives.
View of diesel particulate collected on a teflon filter.
Automobile exhaust on a necleopone filter. Gas vehicles produce a somewhat smaller particle than diesel vehicles. Scientists are still trying to determine what chemical differences there are between the two.
Diesel particulate on a nucleopone filter. Diesel particulate matter (PM) emissions are 3.5-10 times higher than those from gasoline vehicles.
A recent study of particulate matter in NY City revealed that the predominant particulate collected was from diesel sources (52%). Automobiles contributed 6% of the total.