Since man discovered how to use fire, he has continuously polluted the atmosphere. The process of combustion or burning provides us with power, but in using this process we pour much waste material into the atmosphere.
a) ancient Romans complained of odor and soot deposits on clothing and crops due to coal burning, wood burning and oil lamp usage.
b) during the middle ages and the colonial period, similar complaints of odors and soot deposits were registered as a result of burning of fuels.
c) the onset of the lndustrial Revolution produced an increase in the number of cities, homes and factories causing an increase in the amounts of fuels burned to run the factories and heat the homes.
Only recently, has air pollution been considered a serious threat to our biophysical environment. This threat has two main causes: 1) the rapid growth of our population 2) the expansion of our technological activities. This same growth has created new waste products harmful to health, detrimental to the growth of living things, negatively aesthetic and expensive in terms of the economy.