Currently, there are two primary methods being used by industries and power plants to reduce the amount of pollutants released into the atmosphere.
These two methods consist of installing cleansing devices in exhaust or "smoke" stacks. The two types
currently available are called "scrubbers" and electrostatic precipitators.
Scrubbers are designed to remove the various gases (SO2) from the plant emissions. These are considered to be very effective, and many states and EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) require that these be installed.
Electrostatic precipitators are less effective than scrubbers. They are designed to remove the visible soot from the emissions. This makes the emissions look clean but does not remove the real culprits of acid rain, SO2 and NOx.
Cleaner vehicles are produced in the United States which recirculate automobile exhaust back to the engine in order to burn extra NOx. Many people think that catalytic converters do this job, but this is not true. Converters are
designed to remove hydrocarbons (benzene, for instance) which are thought to cause cancer.
By increasing the number of electric vehicles on the road we can decrease the total amount of NOx emissions from automobiles. California is currently requiring that 10% of all new cars sold in the state be zero emission vehicles (electric).