It is a commonly known fact that the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is causing global warming, where Earth’s temperature increases and many ecosystems are damaged. But not many people are aware of another gas that might bring direct problems to humans in the near future. Nitrogen dioxide is one of many environmentally harmful gases that are produced by the use of fossil fuels. Studies show that the higher the density of Nitrogen dioxide, there is higher risk of developing Parkinson's disease.
Short stride width, unsteady hands, and stiffness in the wrist are all common symptoms of Parkinson's disease. Last year, 120 thousand people suffered from this illness. Though it was discovered that the disease damages parts of the brain responsible for athletics, the causes are yet to be found. But recent research has shown that Nitrogen dioxide, the main component of vehicle exhaust gas, increases the risk of Parkinson's disease. Asan Medical Center has tracked around 78 thousand Seoul citizens for up to nine years and has calculated their exposure to Nitrogen dioxide. They found that the most exposed group had a surprising 41% higher risk of Parkinson's disease than those least exposed. It was suggested that the reason was that Nitrogen dioxide, much like micro dust, traveled through the nose to the brain.
After researching 81 countries around the world last year, the Graduate School of Environment in Seoul has concluded that Seoul had the third-highest Nitrogen oxide concentration around the world. In fact, it has twice the density of Nitrogen oxide than London and Chicago. A more detailed solution is required by the fact that air pollution isn’t only causing respiratory diseases, but also increasing the risk of Parkinson’s.
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