What are the consequences of water pollution

what are the consequences of water pollution

Effects of Water Pollution

The following are the effects of water pollution: Water pollution drastically affects human health; in fact, it can kill. In alone, a study revealed that waterborne illnesses caused million deaths worldwide. It can cause contamination of drinking water thereby contributing to waterborne illnesses. Water pollution also affects the ecosystem it can cause a phenomenon called eutrophication. What are the main consequences of water pollution? Firstly, the disappearance of biodiversity and aquatic ecosystems. Also, humans are harmed by the alteration in the food chain and by contracting illnesses when drinking or using contaminated water. As you can see, water pollution has a great impact in the environment.

Of that, only 2. Water quality of streams, lakes, and rivers depends on the sources that feed them. Unfortunately, water pollution is created when fertilizer, animal and human waste, plasticsand toxic cosequences chemicals enters these poollution. It costs the economy by impacting what is ciroc good with health, fishing, tourism, and the environment.

Governments try to control the damage by setting water quality standards to regulate usage. Many of our waterways are in poor biological condition. The leading causes are farm runoff and pollution absorbed from the air. Regulating pollution offenders is pollutio challenge for government agencies. Untreated sewage kills 2. In the U. Farming practices add pollutants consequehces fertilizer, animal waste runoff, and livestock nitrogen waste.

Farm animals also destroy the grasslands, allowing the top soil to wash into waterways as silt. Pollition crops and range land contribute to deforestation resulting in how to set up network printing and siltation of waters.

The runoff creates a rich source of nutrients that plants, such as algae, feed on. As a result, algae blooms have worsened and threaten recreational and potable water supplies. For example, the Mississippi River dumps tons of nitrogen from fertilizer into the Gulf of Mexico each summer. Coral polyps then expel the algae so that only the white framework remains.

Coral can actually tolerate intermittent bleaching, but recurrent events will kill it. In the early s, bleaching only occurred every 25 to 30 years. Bybleaching occurred once every 5.

Shellfish and coral reefs suffer serious damage from ocean acidification also caused by global warming. This in turn causes the pH levels to fall, thus making the water more acidic. Since the s, the pH level has fallen by 0.

It whqt sound like much, but the pH scale is logarithmic like the Richter scale that measures earthquakes. The most devastating economic fallout from water pollution, according to the U. First, pollution increases water treatment prices. This is due to the additional energy costs and chemicals to filter and clean the water. For example, the Great Lakes in Minnesota suffer from enormous algae blooms.

In Augusta red algae bloom off waht southwest coast of Florida created an emergency health crisis. Third, the shellfish industry on America's West Coast is threatened by pollution and ocean acidification. More than half a billion people around the world depend on them for food or fishing income.

It also protects shorelines from unchecked erosion. Fourth, water pollution also negatively impacts real estate values. A what are the consequences of water pollution of waterfront properties in New York showed significant differences consequenecs those on clean versus polluted lakes. That sounds great, but not compared to the values on clean Lake Chautauqua. The government must make clean water a higher priority, especially in more populated areas.

First, the government should update the Clean Water Act and other local and state laws to reflect current conditions. The Act had two significant benefits:. The government should whhat impose Pigouvian taxes on those who pollute. The taxes are proven to curtail pollution and also fund cleanup efforts. The government should increase funding for studies of water pollution solutions. For example, bioremediation has shown great promise at low cost. We can all contribute to solving the water pollution problem.

To stop algae blooms, Greenpeace suggests that we stop or dramatically reduce our consumption of meat, dairy, and eggs. Another solution is for farmers to repurpose manure into biofuels. Modern industrial farming techniques use concentrated what is recession in the business cycle feeding operations that generate more than million tons arf waste annually.

Repurposing would eliminate some of this pollution. Water pollution costs the economy dearly in four areas: water treatment, tourism, commercial fishing, and real estate. The largest contributors to U. Global warming further worsens pollution by increasing acidification and algae blooms and is a wht to our food and connsequences sources.

It should impose Pigouvian taxes and fund studies to uncover solutions such as bioremediation. Businesses should limit the chemicals, fuels, and construction sediment that goes pollhtion the water system. Everyone can do consequfnces part by reducing the use of fertilizers and other household chemicals and by eating fewer animal-based foods.

Accessed Nov. National Ocean Service. World Health Organization. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. United Nations. United States Department of Agriculture. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Science Magazine. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Florida Division of Emergency Management. Research Gate. University of Colorado Boulder.

Science Direct. State of the Planet. Earth Institute. Actively scan device characteristics for identification. Use precise geolocation data. Select personalised content. Create a personalised content profile. Measure ad performance. Select basic ads. Create a personalised ads profile. Select personalised ads. Apply market research to generate audience insights.

Measure content performance. Develop and improve products. Consfquences of Partners vendors. Table of Contents Expand. Table of Contents. Causes of Water Pollution. Effects on the Economy. The Bottom Line. Full Bio Follow Linkedin. Kimberly Amadeo is an expert on U.

She is the President of the economic website World Money Watch. Read The Balance's editorial policies. Article Sources. Your Privacy Rights. To change or withdraw your consent choices for TheBalance. At any time, you can update your settings through the "EU Privacy" link at the bottom of any page. These choices will be signaled globally to our partners and will cconsequences affect browsing data.

We and consequemces partners process data to: Watee scan device characteristics for identification. I Accept Show Purposes.

News section

There are countless species of plants and animals which depend upon water for their survival, making them the most susceptible to water pollution. The Deep Horizon oil spill, for example, adversely affected over 82, birds, 6, turtles, 25, marine mammals and an unquantified number of fish and invertebrates. Apr 21, Water pollution is the contamination of water bodies (like oceans, seas, lakes, rivers, aquifers, and groundwater) usually caused due to human activities. Water pollution is any change, minor or major in the physical, chemical or biological properties of water that eventually leads to a detrimental consequence of any living organism. Death of aquatic (water) animals The main problem caused by water pollution is that it kills organisms that depend on these water bodies. Dead fish, crabs, birds and seagulls, dolphins, and many other animals often wind up on beaches, killed by pollutants in their habitat (living environment).

Jump to navigation. British poet W. This widespread problem of water pollution is jeopardizing our health. Unsafe water kills more people each year than war and all other forms of violence combined. Without action, the challenges will only increase by , when global demand for freshwater is expected to be one-third greater than it is now. Sip a glass of cool, clear water as you read this, and you may think water pollution is a problem. But while most Americans have access to safe drinking water , potentially harmful contaminantsfrom arsenic to copper to leadhave been found in the tap water of every single state in the nation.

Water pollution occurs when harmful substancesoften chemicals or microorganismscontaminate a stream, river, lake, ocean, aquifer, or other body of water, degrading water quality and rendering it toxic to humans or the environment.

Water is uniquely vulnerable to pollution. Toxic substances from farms, towns, and factories readily dissolve into and mix with it, causing water pollution. When rain falls and seeps deep into the earth, filling the cracks, crevices, and porous spaces of an aquifer basically an underground storehouse of water , it becomes groundwaterone of our least visible but most important natural resources. Groundwater gets polluted when contaminantsfrom pesticides and fertilizers to waste leached from landfills and septic systemsmake their way into an aquifer, rendering it unsafe for human use.

Ridding groundwater of contaminants can be difficult to impossible, as well as costly. Once polluted, an aquifer may be unusable for decades, or even thousands of years. Groundwater can also spread contamination far from the original polluting source as it seeps into streams, lakes, and oceans. Covering about 70 percent of the earth , surface water is what fills our oceans, lakes, rivers, and all those other blue bits on the world map. Surface water from freshwater sources that is, from sources other than the ocean accounts for more than 60 percent of the water delivered to American homes.

But a significant pool of that water is in peril. According to the most recent surveys on national water quality from the U. Environmental Protection Agency, nearly half of our rivers and streams and more than one-third of our lakes are polluted and unfit for swimming, fishing, and drinking. Nutrient pollution , which includes nitrates and phosphates, is the leading type of contamination in these freshwater sources.

While plants and animals need these nutrients to grow, they have become a major pollutant due to farm waste and fertilizer runoff. Municipal and industrial waste discharges contribute their fair share of toxins as well.

Eighty percent of ocean pollution also called marine pollution originates on landwhether along the coast or far inland. Contaminants such as chemicals, nutrients, and heavy metals are carried from farms, factories, and cities by streams and rivers into our bays and estuaries; from there they travel out to sea. Meanwhile, marine debris particularly plastic is blown in by the wind or washed in via storm drains and sewers.

Our seas are also sometimes spoiled by oil spills and leaks big and small and are consistently soaking up carbon pollution from the air. The ocean absorbs as much as a quarter of man-made carbon emissions. Examples include wastewater also called effluent discharged legally or illegally by a manufacturer, oil refinery, or wastewater treatment facility, as well as contamination from leaking septic systems, chemical and oil spills, and illegal dumping.

The EPA regulates point source pollution by establishing limits on what can be discharged by a facility directly into a body of water. While point source pollution originates from a specific place, it can affect miles of waterways and ocean.

Nonpoint source pollution is contamination derived from diffuse sources. These may include agricultural or stormwater runoff or debris blown into waterways from land. Nonpoint source pollution is the leading cause of water pollution in U.

Transboundary pollution is the result of contaminated water from one country spilling into the waters of another. Contamination can result from a disasterlike an oil spillor the slow, downriver creep of industrial, agricultural, or municipal discharge.

Around the world, agriculture is the leading cause of water degradation. In the United States, agricultural pollution is the top source of contamination in rivers and streams, the second-biggest source in wetlands, and the third main source in lakes.

Every time it rains, fertilizers, pesticides, and animal waste from farms and livestock operations wash nutrients and pathogenssuch bacteria and virusesinto our waterways. Nutrient pollution , caused by excess nitrogen and phosphorus in water or air, is the number-one threat to water quality worldwide and can cause algal blooms , a toxic soup of blue-green algae that can be harmful to people and wildlife.

Used water is wastewater. It comes from our sinks, showers, and toilets think sewage and from commercial, industrial, and agricultural activities think metals, solvents, and toxic sludge. The term also includes stormwater runoff , which occurs when rainfall carries road salts, oil, grease, chemicals, and debris from impermeable surfaces into our waterways.

In the United States, wastewater treatment facilities process about 34 billion gallons of wastewater per day. These facilities reduce the amount of pollutants such as pathogens, phosphorus, and nitrogen in sewage, as well as heavy metals and toxic chemicals in industrial waste, before discharging the treated waters back into waterways. Big spills may dominate headlines, but consumers account for the vast majority of oil pollution in our seas, including oil and gasoline that drips from millions of cars and trucks every day.

Moreover, nearly half of the estimated 1 million tons of oil that makes its way into marine environments each year comes not from tanker spills but from land-based sources such as factories, farms, and cities.

At sea, tanker spills account for about 10 percent of the oil in waters around the world, while regular operations of the shipping industrythrough both legal and illegal dischargescontribute about one-third. Oil is also naturally released from under the ocean floor through fractures known as seeps. Radioactive waste is any pollution that emits radiation beyond what is naturally released by the environment.

Radioactive waste can persist in the environment for thousands of years, making disposal a major challenge. Accidentally released or improperly disposed of contaminants threaten groundwater, surface water, and marine resources.

To put it bluntly: Water pollution kills. In fact, it caused 1. Contaminated water can also make you ill. Every year, unsafe water sickens about 1 billion people. And low-income communities are disproportionately at risk because their homes are often closest to the most polluting industries.

Waterborne pathogens, in the form of disease-causing bacteria and viruses from human and animal waste, are a major cause of illness from contaminated drinking water. Diseases spread by unsafe water include cholera, giardia, and typhoid. Even in wealthy nations, accidental or illegal releases from sewage treatment facilities, as well as runoff from farms and urban areas, contribute harmful pathogens to waterways. Meanwhile, the plight of residents in Flint, Michigan where cost-cutting measures and aging water infrastructure created the recent lead contamination crisisoffers a stark look at how dangerous chemical and other industrial pollutants in our water can be.

The problem goes far beyond Flint and involves much more than lead, as a wide range of chemical pollutantsfrom heavy metals such as arsenic and mercury to pesticides and nitrate fertilizers are getting into our water supplies. Children and pregnant women are particularly at risk. Even swimming can pose a risk. Every year, 3. In order to thrive, healthy ecosystems rely on a complex web of animals, plants, bacteria, and fungiall of which interact, directly or indirectly, with each other.

Harm to any of these organisms can create a chain effect, imperiling entire aquatic environments. When water pollution causes an algal bloom in a lake or marine environment, the proliferation of newly introduced nutrients stimulates plant and algae growth, which in turn reduces oxygen levels in the water. In certain cases, these harmful algal blooms can also produce neurotoxins that affect wildlife, from whales to sea turtles. Chemicals and heavy metals from industrial and municipal wastewater contaminate waterways as well.

Marine ecosystems are also threatened by marine debris , which can strangle, suffocate, and starve animals. Much of this solid debris, such as plastic bags and soda cans, gets swept into sewers and storm drains and eventually out to sea, turning our oceans into trash soup and sometimes consolidating to form floating garbage patches.

Discarded fishing gear and other types of debris are responsible for harming more than different species of marine life. Meanwhile, ocean acidification is making it tougher for shellfish and coral to survive. Though they absorb about a quarter of the carbon pollution created each year by burning fossil fuels, oceans are becoming more acidic. This process makes it harder for shellfish and other species to build shells and may impact the nervous systems of sharks, clownfish, and other marine life.

Fortunately, there are some simple ways you can prevent water contamination or at least limit your contribution to it:. Tell the federal government, the U. Also, learn how you and those around you can get involved in the policymaking process. Our public waterways serve every American. The humble bivalves, which concentrate everything from heavy metals to cancer drugs in their tissues, provide an ideal way for scientists to monitor nearshore water health.

Litter, sewage, plastic, and other pollutants do more than just ruin the beauty of the beach. They are closing down coastal areas, destroying marine life, and making people seriously sick.

The PFAS-laden firefighting foam used in training exercises at military bases easily slips into groundwater supplies, tainting everything around it.

As droughts parch the Southeast, interstate squabbles heat up over the Tennessee River and the Chattahoochee. Ugly, foul-smelling and sometimes toxic, algal blooms are becoming more common in freshwater ecosystems like rivers, lakes, ponds, and reservoirs. In a move that could open the door to industrial waste and interstate squabbles, the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission is making its water quality standards voluntary.

President Trump revokes the Clean Water Rule and doubles down on his fake weather forecast, while the Bureau of Land Management hitches up its wagons to move west. From fertilizer runoff to methane emissions, large-scale industrial agriculture pollution takes a toll on the environment. The administration relocates science jobs, refuses to fill others, and tosses a lifeline to polluters while silencing citizens.

A growing number of communitiesboth coastal and inlandare finding themselves underwater. Extreme weather, sea level rise, and other climate change impacts are increasingly to blame.

More than craft breweries from across the country, including Brooklyn Brewery and New Belgium Brewing Company, are joining NRDC to explain why clean water is essential for great-tasting beer.

By relying on plants, soil, and natural systems to manage rainfall runoff, green infrastructure tackles urban water woes and boosts climate resilience. After an illegal dumping of close to 2, tons of dangerous sludge and contaminated materials across the street from two schools, a Kentucky community struggles with what to do next.

Ten years after the disaster at a Tennessee power plant, the cleanup crew is seeking justice. At the same time, the Trump administration is weakening protections for this toxic pollution. As the Trump administration ratchets up its rhetoric demanding billions for a wall, American communities along the Mexico border are in need of basic services, like reliable sewage treatment.

The problem of how to dispose of nuclear waste has haunted the United States for six decades.

4 Replies to “What are the consequences of water pollution”

  1. Always pay any transactions via credit card that way you can charge it back, not fukn rocket science

Add a comment

Your email will not be published. Required fields are marked*