WHAT IS LAND POLLUTION ?
• Land pollution may be understood as the
deterioration of the earth’s land surfaces,
often directly or indirectly as a result of
• Include a lot of human actions, like deforestation, overuse of
pesticides and chemical fertilizers, desertification, mining,
inefficient and / or inadequate waste treatment, landfill, litter,
etc. Many of these are unavoidable; however, definitely the
severity of these actions in terms of the effects they have on the
land can be reduced by taking appropriate and adequate
INEFFICIENT USE OF LAND
• Inefficient use of land as such is
not going to cause land
pollution. However, inefficient
use of land amounts to wastage,
and hence shortage of land; and
it is precisely during such
conditions that man has to
resort to measure such as
deforestation and others to meet
his needs. It is an indirect cause
of land pollution that is often
• When the top-most 'soil' layer of land is
destroyed or polluted. Soil pollution is again
another cause of land pollution that affects not
only the land, but also a lot of other things such
as forest cover of a region, productivity of land in
terms of agriculture, grazing etc. Soil pollution is
also caused by wrong agricultural practices, such
as overuse of chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
• When a piece of land is converted from its indigenous
form to a form used for either agriculture or
infrastructure. Land conversion is especially a growing
problem that we possibly do not have a good solution
for. Using a piece of land to its maximum potential is
the key to eliminate many of the causes of land
pollution, such as this one.
Household waste, commercial waste is collected and
sent to the local recycling unit. Items that cannot be
recycled become a part of the landfills that hampers
the beauty of the city and cause land pollution.
Garbage, rubbish and trash from part of the landfills.
Large amount of solid waste is leftover once the
sewage has been treated, biomass sludge, and
settled solids. The leftover material is sent to landfil
site which end up in polluting the land.
• … key causes of land
pollution include urbanization, improper
chemicals released by
all sorts of heavy
power plants, metals
EFFECTS ON CLIMATE
• Land pollutions leads to loss in the forest
cover of Earth. This is in turn going to affect
the amount of rain. Less rain mean lesser
vegetation. The effect of all different kinds of
pollution will eventually lead to problems like
acid rains, greenhouse effect, global warming.
EXTINCTION OF SPECIES
• Species are pushed towards
endangerment and extinction
primarily by two processes. Habitat
fragmentation is the fragmentation
of the natural habitat of an
organism; cause primarily by urban
sprawl. Habitat destruction, on the
other hand, is when land clearing
adversely affects animals special
such that their natural habitat is lost.
Both the actions can cause some
species to go extinct and others to
• Process in which certain non-biodegradable
substances go on accumulating in the food-chain.
The most common example is of methyl mercury
in fish and mercury in eagles. Not only does bio
magnification put the particular species at risk, it
puts all the species above and below it at risk,
and ultimately affects the food pyramid.
EFFECTS ON BIODIVERSITY
• Species extinction and bio magnification is going to
overthrow the balance of nature very significantly.
The main reason for this is disturbance created in the
food chain. To give you a very simple example - on
account of bio magnification of mercury in eagles,
they might go extinct in the subsequent years.
However, we know eagles prey on snakes. Less (or
no) eagles will then result in more number of snakes!
REDUCE TOXIC MATERIALS
Waste materials that are disposed of should have minimal
toxic materials. This can be done by treating the waste
materials with various chemicals to make them less toxic.
Once the waste is treated, it can be disposed of using
responsible methods. Harmful chemicals can also be
replaced with less toxic, biodegradable materials.
RECYCLE WASTE MATERIALS
As explained by the Stanford Recycling Center,
each American throws away 7 1/2 lbs. of garbage.
Garbage requires land fills, which takes up large
amounts of land.
USE ORGANICS PRODUCTS
Buy organics products, especially organic cleaners,
pesticides, insecticides and fertilizers. The
advantage of using organic products is that they
are biodegradable and friendly to the
GROW MORE TREES
• Initiative should be
taken to grow more
show that trees can
actually fertilize the
soil. This means that
by growing trees, soil
will become fertile,
agriculture will get
boosted and land
pollution will greatly
PROPER WASTE MANAGEMENT
• Excessive littering is one of most common reasons for land pollution.
• Take initiative to inform others about the harmful effects of littering.
• Organic wastes must be disposed of in areas that are far from human or
animal habitation. Waste like plastic, metals, glass and paper must be
recycled and reused.
• Find land far away from natural environments to dump wastes that cannot
be disposed of and are essential to industrial processes.
IMPROVE FERTILITY OF THE LAND BY
Soil in forested lands are far more fertile than soil
without trees, suggesting that trees have the
ability to fertilize land.
COMPOST GARDEN AND KITCHEN
SOME MORE …
• Both individuals and authorities have to make positive
changes in the way they conduct things. Spreading
awareness, amongst the common people, to use organic,
biodegradable products and to efficiently use resources,
should be taken up seriously by the government. The
industries too should follow proper procedures of
industrial waste disposal. In addition to this, trees should
be saved and more plants should be grown. All these
initiatives are mandatory for any project on the
prevention of land pollution, to be successful.
More than 50 per cent of the country’s land area falls under some degree and/or
category of degradation. Even the land under cultivation is substantially degraded and
as estimated by the National Remote Sensing Agency (NRSA) and Forest Survey of
India (FSI), about 60 percent of the total cultivated area suffers from some form of
degradation. While in India, about 48 per cent and 44 per cent of all canal command
area is water logged and saline, in Maharashtra, these figures are as high as 88 percent
and above 95 per cent, respectively.
The Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) has been extended to cover Thane, Kalyan,
Bhiwandi, Ulhasnagar and Vasai tehsils of Raigad district in order to overcome
The GoM has an extensive programme of land acquisition for industry, airports,
expressways, ports, tourist resorts and offers liberal package of concessions to
multinational and Indian companies in some parts of Thane and Raigad districts.
MIDC has so far acquired more than 35000 hectares of land over 200 locations.
Pune has the major share of area under wasteland. Also, in Thane about 66 percent
of the land is affected by alkalinity. As NWIP survey (2002), the extent of wastelands
in the State is estimated at 70.53 lakh ha, of which, community lands account for
28.73 lakh ha, private lands 24 lakh ha, and degraded forests 17.8 lakh ha. A satellite
based survey by the Maharashtra Remote Sensing Applications Centre, estimated
non-forest wastelands at 51.15 lakh.
Land Utilisation in Maharashtra (2002 - 03)
Net Area Sown
Barren, Uncultivable and
Culturable Waste Land
Current and other Fallow Land
Permanent, Pastures, Grazing
Land and Land under Misc.
tree, crops and grooves
Land put to Non-Agriclutral uses
Impact of Land Degradation
• In addition, in Maharashtra large diversion of lands from agricultural
sector and forests area to non-agricultural uses affects overall growth and
productivity of the agricultural sector.
• For example, the district of Chandrapur is endowed with very good fertile
natural resources, but anthropogenic activities have led to soil
erosion, excessive land degradation, diminishing soil fertility, low
agricultural production and degradation of forests in this area.
• Increasing gravel and stone quarry has led to accelerated soil erosion
because of the loss of the topsoil nutrient, which is required to maintain
• The Central and State Governments have initiated several programmes
and schemes to check the land degradation. These include centrally
sponsored the Integrated Wastelands Development Programme
(IWDP), the Draught Prone Area Programme (DPAP), Employment
Assurance Scheme (EAS) and National Watershed Development Project
For Rainfed Areas (NWDPRA). In addition, rehabilitation of degraded lands
is also covered under the state sector Integrated Wasteland Development
Programme (IWDP) and EAS.
• As per the requirements of MoEF(Ministry of environment and
forests), GoI, MCGM(municipal corporation of greater Mumbai) has
carried out compensatory mangrove plantation on a 40-hectare
area, which is identified as suitable coastal area for such plantations by
BNHS(Bombay Natural History Society).
• The NMMC (navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation) has planned to assess
the feasibility of using abandoned quarries for rainwater harvesting;
planting trees for restoration of land under abandoned quarries and
implement better handling operational facilities with pollution control
measures in quarries in operations.
Polluted Earth:The Dying Home World by Robert Adrian Dizon
Causes and Effects of Land Pollution by Prabhakar Pillai
How to Prevent Land Pollution by Charles Pearson
USDA NRCS [Inherent Land Quality Map]