Water Pollution

Topics: Water pollution, Water, Water treatment Pages: 6 (2005 words) Published: February 14, 2013
  Clean water is extremely essential for a healthy living. It is life's most important basic necessity while dirty water is one of the deadliest killers. UN has estimated that 10 people die every minute from contaminated water. The World Health Organization estimates that 80% of all sickness and disease in developing countries is due to unsafe water. As water pollution is one of the most widespread problems and it has deadly effects, I chose this topic. Water pollution is the contamination of water bodies (e.g. lakes, rivers, oceans and groundwater). Water pollution occurs when pollutants are discharged directly or indirectly into water bodies without adequate treatment to remove harmful compounds. The project includes the Global perspective, National perspective, possible scenarios and my personal views about this issue.


Water pollution today happens all over the world. Many major cities and countries form a part of it. The top five polluting countries are China, USA, Russia, India and Japan. The water and sanitation crisis claims more lives through disease than any war claims through guns. Some 6,000 children die every day from disease associated with lack of access to safe drinking water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene - equivalent to 20 aircrafts crashing every day.

According to UN statistics every day 2 million tons of human wastes are disposed of in water bodies. In developing countries, 70% of industrial wastes are dumped untreated into waters where they pollute the usable water supply.

The sources of water pollution throughout the world are, 

·         Fertilizers: Synthetic fertilizers can easily leech into lakes or rivers with the help of rainwater or excessive watering leading to water pollution. Fertilizers being drained into the rivers or lakes cause enrichment in nutrients and give rise to growth of algae. Projected increases in fertilizer use for food production and inn waste water effluents over the next 30 years suggest there will be 15% global increase in nitrogen flow into rivers.

·         Chemical industries: They release harmful chemicals into river and water bodies. Today these wastes need to be treated before releasing but not much attention is paid to this and so, waste is released into water without treating. Sewage contains a high amount of pathogens and when it reacts with water causing oxygen to be removed. So removal of oxygen from water life becomes impossible in water.

·         Oil Spills:  Africa has highest amount of polluted water, South Africa to be specific is most polluted country. The government has taken control over the pollution by putting measures and treating wastes before disposals. Africa being a developing continent, cannot afford the cost of treating all the waste and in some industries they dispose the waste directly in water bodies. People there don’t focus on harvesting the rainwater like in China or India. 

In Europe, the most polluted coasts are of Lithuania and Estonia, 70% of all surface water is polluted due to industrial activities. Poland has high rate of water pollution which causes shortage of water for industrial use. Baltic Sea is considered to be most polluted in the world.

In Asia most polluted waters are to be found in China. 70% of China’s water is heavily polluted. This is due to untreated sewages and industrial influence. About two million people suffer from serious disease caused by unsafe water.

It is well known fact that US tap water is safest in the world, generally safe from microbes and chemicals. However, this is true for some states only, while some states are still getting contaminated water. Many Americans still drink tap water without even knowing it. Congress in America passed The Water Act in 1974 that could set national limits on certain contaminants in tap water. In 2009 the EPA warned that threats to drinking water have increased.

Australia has a low rate of water...
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