Environmental pollution can be almost as dangerous as nuclear, biological, and chemical warfare.
While it’s not as immediately lethal, its consequences are far more devastating in the long run.
From ground-level ozone to melting icebergs and global climate change, these 15 types of environmental pollution pose an enormous threat to our planet and everything on it — including us.
Educate yourself on these 15 types of environmental pollution and their effects on your health and the environment before it’s too late.
- Air Pollution
- Water Contamination
- Sound Pollution
- Ozone Layar Depletion
- Disposal Management
- Plastic Waste
- Chemical Accumulation in the Environment
- Radioactive Material Leakage
- Lead Paint Poisoning in Homes for Children
- Mercury from Coal Power Plants
- Nuclear Accidents (Fukushima, Chernobyl, etc.)
- Dioxins From Incinerators
- Waste Management Facilities
- Industrial Harmful Chemicals
- Global Warming
Polluted air can be detrimental to our health and the environment. It is a known carcinogen that can also cause respiratory problems, such as asthma.
Exposure to polluted air can also lead to heart attacks and strokes due to the increased levels of particulate matter in the air.
The most dangerous types of pollutants found in the air are ozone, nitric oxide, sulfur dioxide, and fine particles (PM2.5).
In the United States, water contamination is a major issue. According to the EPA, over 200 million people live in areas with high levels of lead in their drinking water.
This can be a serious problem for children and pregnant women. Adverse effects on growth, intelligence, and behavior have shown in lead exposure.
Even low levels can cause delays in puberty or the ability to reproduce.
Additionally, tens of thousands of chemicals are used in industrial processes or as part of everyday products like cleaning products and cosmetics – many are unregulated and their health effects are unknown.
Noise pollution is any kind of unwanted sound that makes it hard to hear or disrupts the peace.
anything from a dog barking to construction can cause noise and it’s even noticeable in places where there is no background noise at all.
In these cases, the noise would call sound and not background noise. Noise pollution can have a negative impact on our health, especially on people who are more sensitive to noise.
Ozone Layer Depletion
Ozone depletion is one of the most dangerous types of environmental pollution.
The ozone layer prevents ultraviolet radiation from reaching Earth, which would otherwise have a highly toxic effect on humans and other animals.
Ozone depletion occurs when human-made chemicals destroy the ozone layer called chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). CFCs are released into the atmosphere, where they break down into chlorine radicals.
Solid waste management is the process by which we dispose of our solid waste materials.
There are two ways that we can deal with this issue: landfill and incineration.
The landfill is the most common option for dealing with our trash because it is cheaper than other options. Still, it does not really do anything about the pollution that comes from the decomposing organic matter.
The other option for dealing with our trash is incineration, which burns up any pollutants in a controlled environment to reduce air pollution.
With both options, you need to be careful about where you put your garbage because it will affect both humans and animals negatively if they have access to it.
Plastic is a non-biodegradable material that makes up about 90% of all trash floating in the ocean.
Plastic waste is detrimental to the environment for many reasons, but one effect that is especially troubling is how it affects sea life.
The plastic breaks down into smaller pieces and animals can mistake it for food, or get tangled up in it, causing them to suffocate or starve.
In some cases, they eat so much plastic they die from organ failure. We are killing hundreds of thousands of seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals every year from ingesting or getting tangled up in plastic debris.
There are also serious health concerns related to the chemicals leaching out of plastics when they break down which have been linked to endocrine disruption and cancers such as lymphoma and leukemia.
Chemical Accumulation in the Environment
Most chemical accumulation occurs near industrial areas due to higher rates of manufacturing, but it can also happen as a result of natural processes such as volcanic eruptions or forest fires.
The best example of chemical accumulation occurring naturally is acid rain, which was once caused by sulfur dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants, but now has been reduced to a much smaller degree thanks to cleaner energy sources.
Radioactive Material Leakage
A radioactive material leakage is the release of radioactive materials into the environment.
Material can be released because it has been improperly contained, or if storage containers were damaged by an earthquake, for example.
The release may also occur when a company disposes of waste improperly and it leaches into the water supply.
This can contaminate drinking water, leading to radiation poisoning and cancer.
Lead Paint Poisoning in Homes for Children
Lead poisoning is an environmental problem that has been around for decades, but it has recently been making headlines.
The government banned lead-based paints in 1978, but many homes built before this time still have lead paint on the walls and windowsills.
This paint is toxic to children and can lead to various health problems including decreased IQ and even death if the child ingests enough of it.
Because not all signs of lead poisoning are visible, many parents don’t know that lead poisoning effect their child until it’s too late.
Pesticide Overuse / Overdose
Pesticides kill bugs and weeds, but they also cause a variety of environmental problems.
When too used, it can enter the water supply and soil, where it can take years to break down.
Pesticides also pose a risk to wildlife and humans who may come into contact with them.
The skin or ingested can absorb pesticides when animals are hunted for food.
In addition, some pesticides have been found in human breast milk.
Mercury from Coal Power Plants
Coal power plants release mercury into the environment and it is one of the most dangerous types of pollution. Coal power plants account for a whopping 37% of mercury emissions in the United States.
Mercury is not easily degraded, therefore it accumulates in fish and other organisms. Once ingested, it can cause major health problems such as brain damage, kidney problems, and developmental delays.
Mercury has adverse effects on unborn children when mercury emissions from coal power plants expose pregnant women during their pregnancy.
Nuclear Accidents (Fukushima, Chernobyl, etc.)
Nuclear accidents are the most dangerous type of environmental pollution because they can release radioactive material into the environment.
The nuclear reactor meltdown at Fukushima in 2011 released a large amount of radioactive material into the air and water supply, contaminating an area that is much larger than Chernobyl.
Dioxins From Incinerators
Dioxins are a by-product of incineration, and industries also create them during the production process in some industrial facilities.
For example, industries release dioxin as a by-product when they make pesticides. They can also create dioxin when wood preservatives like use pentachlorophenol and tetrachloroethylene are.
Waste Management Facilities
Typically, Waste Management Service Facilities consist of waste transfer sites and/or landfills.
Waste Transfer Sites are where people transfer trash from trucks to a landfill or incinerator.
Landfills are where people pile up and cover with dirt, while incinerators use the heat from fires to turn trash into ash.
Industrial Harmful Chemicals
Industries use, create, or store industrial chemicals in large quantities during the manufacturing process.
In the past century, industries introduced these chemicals into and spread throughout our food supply, water, air, and soil.
Cancer cause has found and birth defects in humans when exposed to high enough levels over time.
The release of greenhouse gases causes global warming, like carbon dioxide and methane, from industrial activity such as burning fossil fuels.
The gases trap heat in the atmosphere, which warms our planet and changes our climate.
Now It’s your turn.
if you have known any types that pollute the environment. kindly comment me.
I must add that as soon as possible.