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Published: Friday 25th of January 2013

Environmental Pollution and its Threats Essay Example


Levels of pollution on our planet are increasing on an everyday basis. The population growth leads to an increase in the number of resources being used. People tend to consume more and more resources and this has numerous byproducts that can harm the environment negatively. Some resources that exist are in abundance, but some are quite scarce, and this is often not being taken into consideration. The byproducts of consumption can create a harmful or polluting effect on the planet, which leads to the environmental contamination that we know today. As the environment grows to become more and more polluted, it becomes a dangerous place to live in. You don’t even need to look too far to see just how much pollution is harming us. Recent stats from the WHO have shown that contamination nowadays leads to 1 in 6 premature deaths around the world. It is no wonder at all that huge non-profit organizations are trying their best to reduce levels of pollution all around the world.

Water Pollution

Contamination of water bodies is creating widespread harm. Water pollution affects many sources of water, from aquifers and groundwater to rivers to even lakes and seas, exerting numerous direct and indirect effects. In a lot of the worlds' developing nations, water is even unsafe to drink but, unfortunately, many consumers don’t have a choice and are forced to drink it. This is outstanding given that one of the most fundamental human rights is the right to drink clean water. If water sources become contaminated, this environmental danger can have enormous implications for society. People need to try and reverse the environmental problems of water pollution in modern society. Surface runoff into streams is another massive environmental water pollution problem, excessive chemicals, and fertilizers from farming practices being washed off by rain from the ground to the stream. A large number of different microorganisms are found in contaminated waters, and this can cause numerous difficulties to the local wildlife and the ecosystem. As chemicals cause a large algal bloom on the top of water sources such as rivers, light cannot enter into the water source and plants can’t photosynthesize – the result is that there’s no oxygen in the water for other animals and fish, leading to a decrease in biodiversity and water source's health. Consumption fuels an increase in waste around the Earth and causes great environmental dilemmas as waste falls into water sources and oceans. Tougher regulations need to exist all around the world to make sure that people are held accountable when they needlessly dump large amounts of waste into the water. Sewage requires also to be well treated. Less economically developed countries often choose to relax their environmental laws and have the culture that doesn’t penalize dumping waste. It may be tough, but there are certainly solutions to such issues to make the world a better place.

Environmental Noise Pollution

Noise pollution in the environment may not seem like much on the face but actually means a whole lot and is a big screaming issue. The noise that has a detrimental impact on both animal and human activity can create numerous problems, so certain steps should be taken to reduce it at all costs. Outdoor noise can create dilemmas in the human environment with hearing loss, as the most obvious point, and also cardiovascular disease and heart problems. In the animal kingdom, noise interferes with reproduction and the migratory patterns of various species, e.g. birds that can’t remember how to fly back to food. It is, therefore, essential to wipe out noise pollution for the environment to flourish. Noise is everywhere we look and hear nowadays and it can cause a lot of suffering, but it needn’t be the case. In most cases, it’s doing something as easy as ensuring buildings have the correct insulation needed that can make all the difference. Planting trees all over the environment and in urban areas can bring about massive benefits for the microenvironment thereby helping to soak up noise, not to mention helping to increase air quality at the same time.

Breathing In Polluted Air

The chemical structure is fairly simplistic on the face but also rather complex, yet the issue of air’s chemical structure is an important one this day and age because it is rapidly changing. Polluted air, according to the WHO, causes 7 million deaths a year (2012) because of the harmful micro quantities of substances in it, particulates, suspended particles and biological molecules. Diseases and allergies can be brought about by animals and human beings as a result of poor quality air, as well as crops which can suffer too. Suspended particles have an enormous ability to damage respiratory systems of animals and other biological molecules can cause all sorts of problems in forms of cancer, for instance. In the modern world, we are becoming vastly responsible for producing a rapid increase in air pollutants predominantly from the over combustion of fossil fuels. Dangerous gasses such as sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide come from our factories, vehicles and numerous other things that we produce in great quantities. Our meat industry is also a leading problem of putting harmful gasses into the air, with cattle contributing to huge levels of methane production as well as clearing down large pieces of forest to keep them there. Increased acid rain results from an increase in harmful gasses, damaging many aspects of the environment from lakes and forest ecosystems. One cannot talk about damage to the environment and air without mentioning global warming. Global warming or the greenhouse effect is the problem that is likely to have the largest long-lasting detrimental impact on the ecosystem. Greenhouse gasses are largely on the increase thanks to anthropogenic combustion of fossil fuels, and these can build up to cause an increased absorption of solar radiation by the earth’s atmosphere. As less and less solar radiation is allowed to escape, this slowly and steadily destroys the whole global environment by warming up the earth’s temperature. Even one degree of warming can have a drastic effect, so this phenomenon is one of the biggest environmental obstacles out there. A lot of scientists actually think that there is no turning back in most cases, having gone past the tipping point, but others are more optimistic. In order to avoid environmental pollution at all costs, it is paramount that we understand and recognize the damage that humans are doing. Thankfully, progress is being made on an international scale. Worldwide efforts such as the Kyoto Protocol or the Paris Agreement have been established in order to combat the environmental problems that global warming can create, working hard to coordinate efforts and establish regulatory frameworks. Other than this, it is vital that governments around the world start looking at other renewable sources of energy for their electricity production. There is a great potential to exploit much greener renewable sources of energy such as solar power or wind power to produce energy all over the world, not just in sunny and windy places. The problem is that few incentives exist for nations to put environmental relief efforts into practice. A lot of the time it even seems futile to impose strict controls on multinational corporations that pollute as they can just pack up and leave for the next country and a lot of tax revenue and jobs will be lost as a result. However, it is time to stand up and demand that worldwide frameworks and laws are established to curb these problems.


An increase in our population combined with our ever growing desire to consume things will lead to risen levels of pollution for a vast number of years. Economic progress and social mobility are large contributing factors relating to extended consumption rates that lead to greater environmental degradation. As people are getting richer around the world due to economic prosperity, it is likely that the world will see more and more contamination over time, unless drastic measures are taken. Society needs to become more educated, and real-life incentives need to be provided to reduce levels of environmental pollution, otherwise, these problems will grow and persist for many years to come. It won’t be easy, but it’s a challenge thoroughly worth perusing if we want to make a positive difference in our world.