Essay on Pollution Causes and Effects
800 Words essay on Pollution Causes and Effects for school and college students.
Climate change with an accelerating pace has become the prime insurmountable challenge on earth. The phenomenon of exceedingly damaging pollution of air, water and soil has exacerbated this issue that the world is at the brink of peril. Pollution has not remained a localized issue anymore, rather inflated to problem with international dimensions. Air pollution has injected massive amounts of carbon emissions, methane and toxic gases in the atmosphere that threatens the lives of billions on the planet. Water pollution has reached the ocean gyres intervening with natural hydrological cycles. Soil pollution directly threatens the food security of the world. Also, noise pollution in the era of proliferating urbanization cannot be ignored. Each type of menace has added woes to the structural and functional existence of humanity, thereby demanding immediate assessment and set of actions.
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The pollutants are a mix of solid particles and gases as outdoor contaminants in the air. Factors that contribute to air pollution are industrial emissions, fossil fuel burning, vehicular emissions, wars that employ explosive releasing poisonous gases, etc. Coal burning and petrochemicals form the biggest contributors of air pollution.
Area sources- Residential wood burners, Construction of housing developments
Mobile sources- cars, buses, sports utility vehicles, lawn mowers, construction equipment, trains, planes.
Agricultural resources- manure, fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides
Natural sources- wild fires, dust storms, volcanic activity
Problems related with air pollution: Respiratory inflammation, chest pain, coughing, nausea, pulmonary congestion,
asthma, ear infections, lung cancer, cardiovascular diseases, infant mortality.
Major air pollutants: Carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, particulate matter and Sulphur dioxide
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Although water covers around 70% of the earth’s surface, nearly 70% of that water is undrinkable. Out of 3% of fresh water, 2% is locked in the glaciers. Water is fundamental to the existence and health of life on the planet. However, increasing pollution and negligent approach towards water pollution has put this scarce resource in an extremely fragile situation.
Pollutants from industrial sources: Asbestos, phosphates, lead, mercury, oils, nitrates, petrochemicals.
Land run-off: Fertilizers, petroleum, pesticides, animal waste.
Oil spills: 12% of oil entering the oceans is from oil spills.
Littering: Plastics, aluminum, foam, Styrofoam, cardboard, newspapers.
Petroleum solvents, organic solvents, chlorinated solvents and chemicals.
Antibiotics and other pharmaceutical products
Perchlorates, trihalomethanes, metals and their compounds
Biological and radioactive elements
Effects of water contamination: Hormonal problems, reproductive problems, nervous system damage, kidney damage, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease.
The plastic buildup in oceans is diabolical that has created a massive marine debris in the North Pacific Ocean. Further environmental degradation can be a huge threat to drinking water, a potential source of intercontinental and global conflicts.
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It refers to the presence of toxic chemicals in the soil. The contaminants that act as pollutants include metals, inorganic ions and salts, and organic compounds. Soil pollution can be anthropogenic or due to natural causes. Natural processes lead to accumulation of toxic chemicals in the soil. Man-made resources originate from industrial, urban and agricultural sources.
Biological agents: Human, bird, and animal excreta that work inside the soil to introduce manures and digested sludge.
Agricultural practices: Pesticides, herbicides, slurry, debris, and manure.
Radioactive pollutants: Radium, thorium, uranium, and nitrogen can infiltrate the soil and create toxic effects.
Urban waste: Garbage and rubbish materials from both domestic and commercial sources.
Industrial waste: Steel, textiles, drugs, glass, cement, petroleum, etc.
Major soil contaminants are lead, mercury, arsenic, copper, zinc, nickel, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, herbicides or insecticides.
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It refers to increase in natural radiation levels caused by human activities. This does not necessarily point to the serious sources of high level radiation rather more ubiquitous ones such as cellphones. Electromagnetic radiation consists of visible light, radio waves, microwaves, infrared and ultraviolet lights, X-rays, and gamma-rays. It may even cause problems such as neurological, reproductive, and cardiac dysfunctions.
Continuous pollution: From uranium mines, nuclear reactors and test laboratories.
Occasional Pollution: Occurs during nuclear or experimental tests.
Accidental Pollution: In case of accidents when nuclear arrangements go out of control, even in case of natural disasters.
Major radioactive contaminants are Caesium-137, Strontium-90, Plutonium-238, Uranium-235.
Radioactive pollution can be consequential in chronic diseases, cancer, or even immediate death.
It refers to unwanted sound that leads to mental and physical inconveniences, depending on the loudness and frequency of sound. A person can hear sound up to 85 decibels and anything beyond it can damage the hearing power.
Human sources of sound can be vehicular noise, industrial noise, commercialization of residential areas, domestic noise, construction activities, political activities, noisy hospitals, fireworks, car alarms, etc.
Effects: Hearing impairment, lack of memory and concentration, neurological diseases, hypertension, exhaustion, dizziness, insomnia, sleep deprivation, etc.