As a source of pollution, with an average driver’s skills combined with the emissions, cars get a huge tick against their names!
The bane of environmentalists all over the world, even those who use them for travel, cars burn fossil fuel to generate power and release harmful gases in the process.
However, besides the things that come out of its exhaust, cars add more chemical pollutants and carcinogens through another part – their tyres!
You don’t have to make elevens on the road, do doughnuts or execute handbrake turns to burn rubber – simply driving your car on any road’s surface will do it.
Road and tyre contact has friction, which generates heat, and as we all know – heat and rubber aren’t the best of mates.
Every time you hop into your car and head to the store or work, you are burning rubber – quite literally!
The Burden of Proof
Now, its all well and good coming out there and stating that tyres burn up during usage and add more chemicals, toxins and carcinogens into the air – but there has to be proof, right?
Well, there is proof and it’s not new – in 2014, two European scientists called Theodoros Grigoratos and Giorgio Martini conducted a research into Non-Exhaust Related Emissions.
They looked at two primary elements – tyre wear and brake wear – amongst other things like clutch and road surface wear!
Their thought-process went something like this – as emission norms get more stringent, exhaust emissions are going to become lesser of a threat.
So, are non-exhaust emissions going to take their place?
Lack of rules against non-exhaust emissions means that there are literally no control guidelines or regulations regarding car-part wear and tear, especially tyres.
The Outcome was Spectacular
Tyres contain a lot of different chemicals as part of their composition – different kinds of rubbers, filler compounds; reinforcing materials; plasticizers; vulcanization chemicals, and anti-ageing elements!
Vulcanizing agents include Sulphur, Selenium, Tellurium, Thiazoles, Organic Peroxides and Nitro Compounds.
Sulphur compounds, Lead, Manganese, Zinc and Calcium Oxides are used while Terpene Resin acid blends, diamines, amines, phenols, etc. are also part of the tyre making process.
Allow us to bring some clarity – There are some 2,300 different components that tyre rubber emits when exposed to heat – and 29 of them are known cancer-causing elements, or carcinogens!
The primary amongst them are Dibenzopyrene and its isomers.
The ones just connect to Benzene include: benzo-flouranthene, chrysene, dibenzanthracene and the list goes on!
Fact is, we don’t even realise the kind of chemicals we are breathing in every single day – on our daily commutes.
The hotter it is, the more chemicals our tyres emit and the more exposed we are to them – especially in a country like India.
Unfortunately, we are not told these truths because we don’t have too many solutions for these problems.
Our news reports and public advisory devices are limited to PM2.5 at best, and that is not nearly enough!
There are so many volatile organic compounds, including cancer-causing elements, chemicals and toxins, that are released by our vehicles, factories and even the gas stove at home – and we are completely unaware of them all!
At least, at Cair, we are confident that our air purifiers can get rid of these problems for you – but are you up for it?
- Non-exhaust traffic related emissions. Brake and tyre wear (Theodoros Grigoratos and Giorgio Martini, 2014)
- Automobile Tires—A Potential Source of Highly Carcinogenic Dibenzopyrenes to the Environment (Ioannis Sadiktsis, Christoffer Bergvall, Christer Johansson, and Roger Westerholm (2012))