What is Pollution?
Forms of pollution
Pollution is the introduction of contaminants into
the natural environment that cause adverse change.
Pollution can take the form of chemical substances or
energy, such as noise, heat or light.
Pollutants, the components of pollution, can be either
foreign substances/energies or naturally occurring
Pollution is often classed as point source or nonpoint
Air pollution is the introduction of
chemical0s, particulates, biological materials, or
other harmful materials into the Earth's
atmosphere, possibly causing disease, death to
humans, damage to other living organisms such
as food crops, or the natural or built
The atmosphere is a complex natural gaseous
system that is essential to support life on planet
Earth. Stratospheric ozone depletion due to air
pollution has long been recognized as a threat to
human health as well as to the Earth's
Indoor air pollution (see Air log) and urban air
quality are listed as two of the world’s worst toxic
pollution problems in the 2008 Blacksmith
Institute World's Worst Polluted Places report.
Soil pollution is defined as the build-up in soils of persistent toxic
compounds, chemicals, salts,
radioactive materials, or disease causing agents, which have adverse effects
on plant growth and animal
Soil is the thin layer of organic and inorganic materials that covers the
Earth's rocky surface.
The organic portion, which is derived from the decayed remains of plants
and animals, is concentrated
in the dark uppermost topsoil. The inorganic portion made up of rock
fragments, was formed over
thousands of years by physical and chemical weathering of bedrock.
Productive soils are necessary for
agriculture to supply the world with sufficient food.
Noise pollution is the disturbing or excessive noise that may
harm the activity or balance of human or animal life. The source of
most outdoor noise worldwide is mainly caused by machines and
transportation systems, motor vehicles, aircraft, and trains.
Outdoor noise is summarized by the word environmental noise.
Poor urban planning may give rise to noise pollution, since side-
by-side industrial and residential buildings can result in noise
pollution in the residential areas.
Indoor noise can be caused by machines, building activities, and
music performances, especially in some workplaces. There is no
great difference whether noise-induced hearing loss is brought
about by outside (e.g. trains) or inside (e.g. music) noise.
Water pollution is the
contamination of water bodies (e.g.
lakes, rivers, oceans, aquifers and
groundwater). Water pollution
occurs when pollutants are directly
or indirectly discharged into water
bodies without adequate treatment
to remove harmful compounds.
Water pollution affects plants and
organisms living in these bodies of
water. In almost all cases the effect is
damaging not only to individual
species and populations, but also to
the natural biological communities.
Pollution causes global warming, death and
diseases in both plants and animals.
Pollution refers to contamination which
interferes with the natural balance of nature and
makes water and air unfit for human use. Air
pollution can cause acid rain which damages
plants and harms animals.
3. Global Warming : The emission of greenhouse gases particularly CO2 is leading to global warming.
Every other day new industries are being set up, new vehicles come on roads and trees are cut to make way for
new homes. All of them, in direct or indirect way lead to increase in CO2 in the environment. The increase in
CO2 leads to melting of polar ice caps which increases the sea level and pose danger for the people living near
2. Human Health : The decrease in quality of air
leads to several respiratory problems including asthma
or lung cancer. Chest pain, congestion, throat
inflammation, cardiovascular disease, respiratory
disease are some of diseases that can be causes by air
pollution. Water pollution occurs due to contamination
of water and may pose skin related problems including
skin irritations and rashes. Similarly, Noise pollution
leads to hearing loss, stress and sleep disturbance.
1. Environment Degradation : Environment
is the first casualty for increase in pollution weather
in air or water. The increase in the amount of CO2
in the atmosphere leads to smog which can restrict
sunlight from reaching the earth. Thus, preventing
plants in the process of photosynthesis. Gases like
Sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide can cause acid
rain. Water pollution in terms of Oil spill may lead
to death of several wildlife species.
A litter trap catches floating waste
in the Yarra River, east-central
Pollution control is a term used in
environmental management. It means the
control of emissions and effluents into air,
water or soil. Without pollution control, the
waste products from consumption, heating,
agriculture, mining, manufacturing,
transportation and other human activities,
whether they accumulate or disperse, will
degrade the environment. In the hierarchy
of controls, pollution prevention and waste
minimization are more desirable than
pollution control. In the field of land
development, low impact development is a
similar technique for the prevention of