Water Pollution

Topics: Water, Water pollution, Waste Pages: 2 (566 words) Published: January 27, 2013
Causes and Effects of Water Pollution

Image source: NASA
Water covers 70% of the Earth’s surface and makes up over 60% of the human body. Water pollution affects marine ecosystems, wildlife health, and human well-being. The answer to solving pollution is to make changes in our daily habits and pay more attention to the types of products we consume. The following lists display causes of water pollution and the effects it has on human health and the natural environment.

Causes of Water Pollution

Sewage from domestic households, factories and commercial buildings Sewage that is treated in water treatment plants is often disposed into the sea. Sewage can be more problematic when people flush chemicals and pharmaceutical substances down the toilet. Dumping solid wastes and littering by humans in rivers, lakes and oceans. Littering items include cardboard, Styrofoam, aluminum, plastic and glass. Industrial waste from factories, which use freshwater to carry waste from the plant into rivers, contaminates waters with pollutants such as asbestos, lead, mercury and petrochemicals. Oil Pollution caused by oil spills from tankers and oil from ship travel. Oil does not dissolve in water and forms a thick sludge. Burning fossil fuels into the air causes the formation of acidic particles in the atmosphere. When these particles mix with water vapor, the result is acid rain. An increase in water temperature is caused by global warming and thermal plants that use lakes and rivers to cool down mechanical equipment. Effects of Water Pollution

Groundwater contamination from pesticides causes reproductive damage within wildlife in ecosystems. Sewage, fertilizer, and agricultural run-off contain organic materials that when discharged into waters, increase the growth of algae, which causes the depletion of oxygen. The low oxygen levels are not able to support most indigenous organisms in the area and therefore upset the natural ecological balance in rivers and...
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