Environmental pollution is one the greatest challenges that the world is facing today. It began since industrial revolution, increasing day by day and causing irreparable damage to Mother Earth. Environmental pollution has its own causes, effects and solutions. Looking into these will help you identify the causes and what steps you can take to mitigate those effects. Broadly, environmental pollution consists of six basic types of pollution, i.e. air, water, land, soil, noise, and light.
The environment will continue to deteriorate until pollution practices are abandoned.
~ B. F. Skinner
Pollution, in whatever form, whether it is air, water, land or noise is harmful for the environment.Air pollution pollutes the air that we breathe which causes health issues. Water pollution degrades the quality of water that we use for drinking purposes.Land pollution results in degradation of earth's surface as a result of human activities.Noise pollution can cause irreparable damage to our ears when exposed to continuous large sounds like honking of vehicles on a busy road or machines producing large noise in a factory or a mill.
Power plants burn coal as fuel contributed heavily, along with vehicles burning fossil fuels, to the production of smog. Smog is the result of fossil fuel combustion combined with sunlight and heat. The result is a toxic gas which now surrounds our once pristine planet. This is known as "ozone smog" and means we have more problems down here than we do in the sky.
Deforestation is the cutting down of trees to make way for more homes and industries. Rapid growth in population and urban sprawl are two of the major causes of deforestation. Apart from that, use of forest land for agriculture, animal grazing, harvest for fuel wood and logging are some of the other causes of deforestation. Deforestation contributes to global warming as decreased forest size puts carbon back into the environment. A continually growing population of humans and clear cutting of forests has exacerbated this problem so natural defenses are no longer present and carbon dioxide levels are on the rise.
Many industries dump wastes into rivers, lakes, ponds, and streams in an attempt to hide wastes from EPA inspectors. These water sources feed major crops and food becomes contaminated with a variety of chemicals and bacteria, causing rampant health problems.
Radiation comes into play as well. This is an exceedingly nasty pollution issue and requires extensive description. Primarily, there is radiation from the sun. As the natural ozone layer around the Earth has become depleted. The sun is wonderful, but the only reason we are able to survive on this planet so close to the sun is due to the fact of natural shielding against solar radiation. As the protective ozone layer around the planet has become thinner, ultraviolet radiation has risen significantly, causing increases in skin cancers and other types of cancer in all countries, killing millions of people every year.
More radiation is a problem. The sun shining brightly on a naked planet is not the only source of radiation we are exposed to.Electromagnetic radiation is another insidious culprit. Once upon a time, the major concern around this type of radiation was due to high tension wires which carry huge amounts of electricity to cities. Now, we even carry sources of this radiation with us as cell phones, laptops, tablets and other wireless devices.
Pollution prevention is a major global concern because of its harmful effects on people's health and the environment. Because we are all inhabitants on Earth, everyone is a stakeholder, and every person has something to contribute to advance effective pollution prevention awareness. Environmental protection is a natural extension of caring for ourselves, loving our children, and ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come.
We should all, therefore, accept personal responsibility for the success of our local environmental protection programs by actively participating in making our atmosphere pollution-free. And, although we can each help combat pollution in our immediate environments, we can do more by working to change legislation and policy on a larger scale.Still, there are small changes we can make on the individual level that make a difference, both in the short and long term.
Every action or inaction of any person has an effect on the environment-be it good, neutral, or negative. By becoming aware and doing the right thing, we choose to be part of the solution. Here are some things you can do: