Environmental pollution and its effects - How to reduce the effects of pollution

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Environmental pollution and its effects - How to reduce the effects of pollution?

By: Mahtab Alam Quddusi

Environmental pollution and its effects

The environment is all that Almighty God has created for us from trees, animals, seas, oceans, soil, and others. Environmental pollution is defined as "the introduction of contaminated substances in the natural environment", which has harmful or toxic effects and causes adverse changes. The pollution of the environment occurs when polluters enter the natural environment, disrupt their balance and negatively affect the life of living organisms. These pollutants take many forms. They may be chemicals or natural energy When they exceed natural levels. It causes a significant imbalance in the world, especially with the increase of greenhouse effects, global warming, environmental degradation, and ozone depletion. It includes pollution of groundwater and ocean water and rivers with sewage and waste factories, as well as air pollution and soil with chemical contaminants and inorganic fertilizers and pesticides. It is the duty of all to preserve the environment and protect it from pollution.

Some major sources of environmental pollution

Environmental pollutions have basically two sources of existence; Point and non-point sources.

There is no difficulty identifying, monitoring and controlling point sources, while nonpoint sources are difficult to control.
Let us discuss the various sources of pollution, their causes, and effects on mankind and our environments as a whole.
The sources and causes of environmental pollution include:

  • Dumping Solid Waste

 Domestic and commercial wastes and useless materials pollute the environment when they are not disposed of properly.

  • Vehicles

Smoke emitted by vehicles using gasoline, petrol and diesel and cooking coal also pollute the environment. Harmful smoke from these vehicles causes air pollution. In addition, the noise produced by these vehicles causes noise pollution.

  • Industrial activities

The industries around the world who brought affluence and prosperity infiltrated the biosphere and troubled ecological balance. Due to the collapse of smoke, curved gases, industrial pollutants, and scientific experiments became health risks constantly, contaminating and polluting both air and water. Improper disposal of industrial effluents is the source of soil and water pollution. Chemical waste emitting from the industries can pollute the lakes, rivers, oceans, and soil and release the smoke as well as fumes.

  • Combustion of fossil fuels

Combustion of fossil fuel pollutes the air, soil, and water with deadly gases like CO2 and CO.

  • Agricultural waste

Pesticides and several fertilizers that are used in agriculture are the main causes of environmental pollution.

  • Rapid urbanization and industrialization

 The rapid growth of urbanization and industrialization is causing environmental pollution to be the biggest loss to the plant's life, which in turn can damage the human life and animal kingdom.

  • Population overgrowth

Due to the increase in population, especially in developing countries, the demand for basic foods, occupations, and shelters has increased. The world has seen deforestation on a large scale to absorb the growing population and their demands.

  Types of Pollution

Environmental pollution occurs in different forms; Air, water, heat/thermal, noise, soil, light, radioactive. Let's discuss them separately:

  • Air Pollution

Air pollution is the most dangerous and prevalent form of pollution, especially with urbanization, it is considered to go hand in hand. There are many reasons for this pollution. Primary form among these is exorbitant fuel combustion which has become the basic requirement for cooking, transport and other industrial activities. It releases innumerable gases and many chemicals to the air, that is far from being removed away from the air. This kind of pollution is directly affecting our existence.

Vehicles, stacks, chimneys, factories or something as common as ‘burning of wood’ produce smoke and fumes and release NO2, SO2, oxides of carbon and other toxic and greenhouse gases into the air that cause global warming and these gases have the capability to cause acid rain. The emissions of these gases and global warming have increased the temperature of the world, the quantity of irregular and erratic rainfall and drought worldwide. They have mainly increased the cases of bronchitis, asthma and more dangerous lung cancer in the metro cities.

It is believed that air pollution eliminates life of more than two million people every year. One of the leading and unfortunate examples of what can air pollution do is the Bhopal Gas Tragedy in 1984. This tragedy was the direct result of the release of methyl isocyanate gas in the Union Carbide Plant in Bhopal. In this accident, more than 2,000 people are killed, and more than 200,000 people suffered respiratory problems. An irritant may cause respiratory ailments, and grow in heart disease, and asthma. Even there are birth defects in the babies borne today, which are considered due to the tragedy.

  • Water Pollution

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save water

Water is one of the most important and essential substances on earth. All living beings as much as animals, humans and even plants should have water to survive. If there was no water in the world then there would be no life on earth.
Still, water pollution is one of the most serious environmental and ecological hazards we face today.  and it has become another major type of pollution that needs to be stopped.
Water pollution is a physical, chemical, and biological change in the quality of water, which has harmful effects on any living being who drinks, uses or stays in it. When humans drink polluted water, they often have serious effects on their health. Water pollution can also make water useless and inappropriate for the desired use.
It can be attributed to many factors- Industrial wastes thrown in rivers and oceans cause huge imbalances in the properties of water, which makes water bodies inappropriate for aquatic life. Water pollution is also a major cause of diseases caused by non-aquatic species.
Pesticides, insecticides which are spraying on plants, pollute the groundwater system, and oil spills in the oceans have caused irreversible damage to the water bodies. Eutrophication is another big source; This is due to daily activities like washing clothes, utensils near lakes, rivers or ponds. It faces detergent to go into the water, that blocks the sunlight from penetrating,  thus making oxygen inhabitable and reducing it.
Water pollution not only damages the aquatic creatures but it also affects the whole food chain by contaminating them seriously.  Water-borne diseases such as cholera, diarrhea, have also increased in all places.

  • Thermal Pollution

 This is the result of excessive heat release in the environment. This causes irreversible and undesirable changes of almost permanent nature. Vehicles and industries are the direct contributors in this. Deforestation or disforestation is an indirect contributor to this.
Greenhouse gases which have increased the temperature of the Earth surface, and have the power to cause drastic climate change and wildlife extinction, are the resultant of thermal pollution.

  • Noise pollution

This happens when high-intensity noise reaches our bare ears compared to 85 dB. This can lead to psychological problems like stress, hypertension, and high blood pressure. It can also cause a decrease in permanent hearing, which is worse. This is mainly due to the vigorous pump and compressor in the chemical industries. Even wedding functions and rock music concerts are often ignored by the contributors of such pollution.

  • Soil/ Land  Pollution

 This is because of the inclusion and incorporation of unwanted chemicals in the soil due to human activities. The use of pesticides and insecticides absorbs nitrogen compounds from the soil, making plants inappropriately to obtain nutrition. The release of industrial wastes, mining, and deforestation also take advantages of soil. Since the plants can not grow properly, they can not catch the soil and hence lead to soil erosion. many foods are also major contributors to landfill wastes.
Commercial or industrial wastes are important parts of solid wastes. Most of these are classified as non-hazardous, such as medical waste (surgical gloves, bandages, surgical instruments, discarded needles, etc.) and construction materials (concrete, bricks, wood, glass etc.). Hazardous waste is a solid, liquid, or sludge waste, which has such properties that are potentially harmful or dangerous to the environment and human health. Industries produce hazardous waste from petroleum refining, mining, pesticide manufacturing, and other chemical production. Households also generate hazardous waste as well, including fluorescent lights, motor oils, aerosol cans, ammunition, paints, and solvents.

  • Light Pollution

Whenever light available is more than what is required in an area, this increases pollution. This kind of pollution is more noticeable in big cities,  on advertising boards and billboards,  particularly during large-scale events; sports events, vis-a-vis Concerts, and even marriages at the night. It also affects in astronomical observations by making difficulty observing stars and studying them.

  • Radioactive Pollution

This is considered to be the most dangerous pollution due to its permanent effects. An uncontrolled problem in a careless nuclear waste disposal and a nuclear plant etc. It can cause blindness, birth defects, skin - cancer, blood- cancer, and infertility due to exposure.  It has the potential to change the soil, air, and water permanently that are major sources of life. It can also cause mutation in species which can propagate for ages.

Some Major Effects of Environmental Pollution

Environmental pollution has negatively influenced the lives of both humans and animals. Almost all the benefits in the field of industrial progress, science and technology have been felt so far at the cost of our health. Even our flora and fauna were threatened with extinction. Pollution not only affects human beings by destroying their respiration, neurological and cardiovascular systems; It affects nature, plants, vegetables, fruits, forests, animals, rivers, ponds, etc, which they are highly dependent on for survival. Controlling pollution is important because nature, wildlife, and human life are precious gifts for mankind. Let's briefly discuss some major effects of environmental pollution one by one.

  • Environment Degradation

The environment is the first incidence of an increase in polluted weather in the air or water. increasing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere leads to the production of smog and smoke which can prevent sunlight from reaching the Earth. Thus, inhibiting plants in the process of photosynthesis. Gases like nitrogen oxide and Sulfur dioxide can cause acid rain. Acid rain occurs as a result of a chemical reaction that begins when compounds such as sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides are released into the air. These substances can be highly reactive in the atmosphere, where they interact with water, oxygen and other chemicals to make more acidic pollutants called acid rain.
Water pollution in the case of an oil spill can cause the death of many wildlife species.

  • Global Warming
global warming
global warming

The emission of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide is the result of human activities.  Considering the main role of human activity in generating this, this phenomenon is sometimes called "anthropogenic climate change" or "anthropogenic global warming".
As global warming, also referred to climate change, it is observed a century-scale rise in the average temperature of the Earth's climate system and its related effects. Many lines of scientific evidence show that the climate system is getting hot.  Emissions of greenhouse gases, especially CO2, are causing global warmingNew industries are being set up every other day, new vehicles come on streets and roads are cut to make way for new homes. All of them lead to an increase in CO2 in the environment directly or indirectly. The increase in CO2 causes melting of polar ice caps which raise the sea level and pose a threat to the people living near the coastal areas.

  • Global dimming

Global dimming is the gradual decline in the amount of global direct radiation on the surface of the earth which was observed for several decades after the start of methodological measurements in the 1950s. The effect varies by location, but worldwide it has been estimated to be in the order of a 4 percent decline during the three decades 1960-1990. However, after deducting the anomalies caused by the eruption of Pinatubo Mountain in 1991, a very simple reflection was observed in the general trend.

It is believed that global retardation or global dimming is probably due to the increased presence of aerosol particles in the atmosphere due to human activities. Aerosols and other particles absorb solar energy and reflect sunlight in space. Pollutants can also become the nucleus for cloud droplets.

  • Greenhouse effect

The greenhouse effect is the process that exposes the surface of the Earth. When solar radiation reaches the Earth’s atmosphere, some of this is reflected back to space. The rest of the radiation is absorbed by the land, and the seas, heating the Earth. Some of the heat is trapped by greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, keeping the Earth warm enough to sustain life. Human activities such as burning fossil fuels, agriculture, and land clearing are increasing the number of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere. It is trapping extra heat and causing the Earth's temperature to rise. If there are radiative gases in the atmosphere then they will irradiate energy in all directions.
The greenhouse gases include Carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, methane, ozone water vapor and some synthetic chemicals such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs).

green house effect
Greenhouse effect mechanism

  • Depletion of the Ozone Layer

Ozone layer prevents ultraviolet rays from reaching the Earth. In addition, UV exposure can cause skin cancer. Due to the release of CFCs and aerosols in the atmosphere contributing to the depletion of the ozone layer. This removes the sheet which protects us from harmful UV-rays, which is more than just threatening.

  • Infertile Land

The continued use of insecticides, pesticides and other chemicals causes the soil to become infertile. The soil is dominant and in some cases, it is the only source of nutrition for plants and vegetables. Its importance can never be eliminated. But due to the infertile soil, the plants cannot grow properly. Industrial wastes also affect the fertility of the soil.

  • Human Health

Deficiency of air quality leads to many respiratory problems, including asthma or lung cancer. Cardiovascular disease, chest pain, throat swelling, congestion, respiratory disorders are some diseases that can be caused by air pollution. Water pollution is caused by the contamination of water and it may lead to skin related problems including skin irritations and rashes. Similarly, noise pollution causes stress, sleep disturbance, and hearing loss.

Solutions to Environmental Pollution

  • Gas emissions pollution is being sued in various ways with car emissions control, hybrid and electric vehicles, and public transport systems. Not all major cities have successful implementation and decent public transport, but the world is constantly working on this issue and we have been able to reduce emissions in the last decade. There is much catching up to do in the world.
  • Solar energy is a fantastic and great solution. Now solar radiation is on a climactic peak, we can reap electricity from the sun using a solar panel system. It ranges from homes to large-scale systems that empower communities and cities.
  • The cost of radioactive power plants is getting clear and the days of coal power plants are almost dead. Radiation is a serious issue. Radioactive leakage from power plants and nuclear tests has already contaminated marine life for such a degree that it will take hundreds of years to become normal. More radiation solutions are in place, which is being created every day on various ecologically friendly power technologies.
  • Wind energy is coming in the game. This does not seem very much for the first time, but when you are about 100 feet away from the ground, there is a lot of winds there. By producing wind turbines for the harvesting of natural wind energy, electricity is produced. Wind turbine power and solar power both are powerful forces against fossil fuel power and radioactive power. Here is a problem with electric companies. They want to be with radioactive power plants because they cannot really be removed. This has become the Crusades of many individuals and small corporations to switch, and after this many people cry for help.\
  • Reduction in electromagnetic radiation (ER): The major manufacturers of computer and electronic devices realized the blatant potential for large electromagnetic radiation emissions directly into the brain and eyes of users, they started implementing the hardware protocol to minimize risks and reduce ER production. New devices are leading to dismissing this problem and fortunately, it is working.
  • In addition, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is well aware of all leaks and trick industries, using garbage waste. This agency now has strict protocols and testing procedures against such facilities, so the population is not affected. In addition, the EPA is measuring air pollution and is implementing regulatory processes for vehicle emissions. They also monitor the pollen issues and, with the help of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), they apply the solution to reduce pollen in the air.
  • Leaving pollen calculations is a major focus for EPA and CDC activities. Asthma and other allergic conditions are flooding in medical care facilities and pharmaceutical companies with serious public health problems. The response has increased rapidly and various methods of controlling emissions and reducing pollen count are in the works. Children and elderly people are at the highest risk for health problems related to environmental pollution. The good news is that we are directly on the horizon to reduce the causes and risks while providing practical health solutions to the general public throughout the world. 

Important Message

It is very important for everyone to understand the importance of hygiene and cleanliness and to maintain a healthy and peaceful life forever. Cleanliness is not only meant about the cleanliness of body, it means about the cleanliness everywhere (cleanliness of body, mind, soul, home, surrounding, environment, river, and whole planet)
Come on! We all promise that we will free our environment from all types of pollution and We pledge to build a clean and transparent society.

Be clean! Be healthy!

Environmental pollution and its effects - How to reduce the effects of pollution Environmental pollution and its effects - How to reduce the effects of pollution Reviewed by The Scientific World on May 07, 2018 Rating: 5


  1. Very useful article about environment,

  2. Stream of untreated squanderer water into the water bodies, blending of noxious or unsafe gases into the air or ingestion of dangerous waste in soil are troubling instances of the procedure of pollution.
    what is pollution


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