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Investigation of Probable Pollution from Automobile Exhaust Gases in Kampala City, Uganda: To Assess the current automobile exhaust gas emission levels and characterize the emissions from different automobile types
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Energy Technology. (Heat and Power Division)
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

It is estimated that transport sources in developing countries contribute about 4% of the global fossil carbon dioxide versus 18% by industrialized countries. The cost of urban air pollution is estimated to be 2% of GDP in developed countries and more than 5% in developing countries. With an annual vehicle registration growth of over 30% in 2008 and a population growth rate of 6%, the number of automobiles in Kampala city of Uganda is expected to continue growing exponentially. Most of the vehicles used are imported into the country when quite old with worn out engines and low energy efficiencies. As a result, such vehicles profusely emit exhaust gases which may be harmful to both human health and the environment. Controlling pollution from the transport sector is vital to improving the quality of air and protecting public health. The objective of this dissertation was to determine the level of pollution from automobile exhaust gases in Kampala City and its impacts on human health and the environment. The study involved the analysis of tail pipe emissions using a gas analyser. It covered mini buses, motorcycles and personal vehicles which constitute 92% of the Kampala vehicle parc. It was established that the main types of exhaust gases from the automobiles were CO2,  NOx, CO, NO and HC. The findings estimated the highest level of NOx tail pipe emissions at 0.15 mg/m3, HC emissions at 2.59 mg/m3, CO at 110 mg/m3 and 286.6 mg/m3 for CO2. The reported ambient air emissions were estimated at 0.18 ppm, 14000 ppm and 1.3 ppm corresponding to NO2, CO2 and CO, respectively. The study further investigated the impact of four mitigation methods on emission levels using the LEAP model. The impact of increasing penetration of city buses, introduction of tail pipe emission standards and hybrid cars and improvement of vehicle fuel economy were investigated. It was found that if left unabated, the emissions will continue to grow with the increasing number of motor vehicles. Implementation of the proposed mitigation methods resulted in a reduction in the GWP reduced by 52%, 51%, 17% and 8.5%, respectively. It is recommended that a comprehensive motor vehicle pollution control program be designed to implement the proposed NEMA vehicle emission standards. Establishment of an integrated transport system promoting the growth in number of city buses should be made a priority to reduce on emission levels and enable the decongestion of Kampala city.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 56 p.
Keyword [en]
Greenhouse effect, climate change, mitigation, GWP, vehicle emissions standard, LEAP model, simulations.
National Category
Energy Systems
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-92013OAI: diva2:511858
Subject / course
Thermal Engineering
Educational program
Master of Science - Sustainable Energy Engineering
2011-12-08, Faculty of Technology, Makerere University, P,O Box 7062, Kampala, Uganda, 10:15 (English)
Available from: 2012-03-26 Created: 2012-03-23 Last updated: 2012-03-26Bibliographically approved

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