Water pollution is a term that refers to the contamination of water in water bodies. These water bodies include the oceans, lakes, rivers, aquifers, and groundwater. Ideally, water pollution occurs when pollutants are discharged in a direct or indirect way into the water bodies without appropriate measures of treatment to eradicate them (Goel 14). Some of these pollutants are categorized as chemicals, as well as, other foreign substances that are deemed to be detrimental to the general plant, animal and human health. Precisely, some of these substances include fertilizers, pesticides that are evolved from the runoffs in the agricultural field and other chemical discharges that are evolved from the industries. Statistics in the current times indicates that there are an accumulative two million people who consume polluted water globally. This research paper describes water pollution as one among the major global problems, identifies the causes of water pollution and the solution to the problem of water pollution.
Ideally, water pollution is one of the major global problems that demands evaluation. Accordingly, there have been a series of revision of water resource policies at individual to global levels. Suggestions about the foremost global causes of death stipulate that about 14,000 people die per day. For instance, in china, approximately 90% of the states suffer from a certain level of water pollution. This is feasible since it is one amongst the most industrialized countries in the world (Olness 383). Most of the developed and developed countries have continually struggled with problems related to water pollution for some time now. According the recent study of water quality in the United States, an approximate of 47% of lakes, 45% of the rivers, and 32% of estuaries and bays have been categorized to be polluted.
According to ecological studies, pollution of water is considered to be caused by anthropogenic contaminants. Water is also considered to be polluted when it does not prop up human consumption including drinking. In addition, it could be considered to be polluted when it cannot support life in terms of plants and biotic animals such as fish. Besides the artificial sources of water pollution, there are other natural sources of water pollution.
Categories of Sources of Water Pollution
According to the categorization of the types of waters, there are two common ways of identifying the water pollutants. First, there are two sources of water. Namely, they include surface waters and ground water. Similarly, water pollution is categorized into the two:
- Surface water pollution
Surface water pollution is categorized into two sources of pollution. They are deemed to be the sources of water pollution that affect the water on the surface. These sources are:
- Point sources
Point source of water pollution is a term that is used to refer to the contaminants that meet the water in a single waterway (Olness 383). That is; the pollutant substances are sourced from a single source such as a pipe. An example of this category of sources is the discharge that is evolved from a factory towards the river through a ditch or pipe.
- Nonpoint sources
This category of water pollution sources refers to the manner by which the pollutant originates from a diversely distributed and discrete source. It could be sources out of a gathered amount of pollutant substances found in the farms. It includes the fertilizer components that are identified to remain in the soil.
- Ground water pollution
Surface water and groundwater are identified to interrelate. This is because underground water occurs because of the percolation of surface water. Pollution of groundwater is referred to as groundwater contamination. A release of chemicals into the soil contaminates the aquifer below hence causing water pollution.
The Causes/Types of Water Pollution
Because of the already discussed, sources of pollutant and contaminators of water, water gets into contact with different types of pollutants that bear differentiated chemical and physical characteristics. Some of the major areas which are responsible for water pollution include homes, industries and Agriculture. These are the basic areas where development has taken place. Ideally, most of these sources are resultant from the growing global industrialization (Olness 383). In the current world, there are several types of water pollution. They include:
- Organic and inorganic substances
This is the pollution that occurs when an excess amount of organic and inorganic matter is released from industries and homesteads to water. An example of this organic matter is the industrial sewage or manure. Ideally, when the organic matter increases, the rate of decomposition are rises. This leads to depletion of oxygen. Examples of organic substances include detergents, herbicides, food processing waste, and other industrial insolvents.
- Thermal pollution
This is one of the recent types/ sources of water pollution. It occurs when the natural temperature of water is changed. It is different from the chemical pollution since it results to a change in the physical property of water. Because of this, the level of oxygen falls leading to death of fish and other biotic species. This is because the rising temperature leads to an alteration of the food chain composition hence reducing the level of biodiversity.
- Macroscopic pollution
This is caused by the introduction of large substances into water. An example of these substances includes large plastic substances, shipwrecks and other trash that is thrown into the water. They are either thrown by individuals or companies.
Recent studies of water pollution have led to improvisation of methods to either prevent pollution or reduce water pollution (Stephenson 48). Ideally, different governments and relevant bodies have used strategic methods to control water pollution. Water pollution can control from an individual as good sector perspective.
Impacts of water pollution
Water pollution affects the balance of nature that is mainly felt by human beings and aquatic creatures such as fish. Ultimately, water pollution does not have any positive impact. Ideally, it causes illness to the human beings who consume it. This is because polluted water contains chemical substances and other microorganisms (Stephenson 48). In addition, the excess consumption of polluted water has led to myriad deaths in the society. Different strategies are being evaluated to prevent or reduce the rate by which water pollution takes place in the world. This is discerned to be among the major steps towards maintaining a balance in the ecosystem.
Method of controlling water pollution
The efforts to control water pollution are essential to maintaining a balanced ecosystem. Treatment of water that is polluted is not deemed to be the best strategy to reduce the impacts that are caused by water pollution (Stephenson 48). However, the best method of controlling water pollution is the art of prevention. There are several vital methods of preventing water pollution from taking place. They include:
- Conservation of soil- soil erosion is one of the major roots of water pollution today. Steps to conserve soil from soil erosion include planting vegetation covers. This is one of the natural methods of controlling water pollution.
- Proper disposal of toxic industrial chemicals- ideally, the use of nonvolatile substances is preferable when it comes to households. This proposal is also considered feasible when the households, as well as the industries, have no option, but to use the chemically intensive substances (Olness 383). In addition, the industries should make appropriate use of technology to treat the chemical waste before releasing it to water bodies.
- Use of organic fertilizers in agriculture- the use of non-chemical intensive farm inputs enables the society to reduce the level of water pollution. Ideally, organic farm inputs are considered environmental friendly.
- Proper disposal of solid waste- the large substances, such as plastics and other non-organic substances that are thrown into water bodies are other sources of water pollution. Ideally, these substances should be well disposed of to ensure that they do not add up to the factors that lead to water pollution.
- Control of flooding waters- amply effective method of controlling the running off of water regulates the velocity of storm water. This reduces the level of soil erosion. Random rush of water carries with it the pollutant discharges
Water covers an average of 70 % of the surface of the earth. However, only less than 3% of this water is deemed to be safe for drinking. Major industrial developments are the sources of the water pollution. However, effort's to control water pollution are under evaluation whereas others are already being implemented. Ideally, proper control of water pollution is effective in maintaining a balanced ecosystem.
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