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Pollution and Its Various Forms Paper

Words: 4230, Paragraphs: 9, Pages: 15

Paper type: Essay , Subject: Wastewater Treatment

Pollution is the introduction of contaminants into the natural environment that causes 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 contaminants. Pollution is often classed as point source or Nippon source pollution. Forms of pollution The major forms of pollution are listed below along with the particular contaminant relevant to each of them: * Air pollution : – The release of chemicals and particulates into the atmosphere.

Common gaseous pollutants include carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, chlorofluorocarbons (CIFS) and nitrogen oxides produced by industry and motor vehicles. Photochemical ozone and smog are created as nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbons react to sunlight. Particulate matter or fine dust is characterized by their micrometer size IMO to PM. 5. * Light pollution : – Includes light trespass, over.

Illumination and astronomical interference. Littering : – The criminal throwing of inappropriate man-made objects, unredeemed, onto public and * Noise pollution : – which encompasses roadway noise, riveter properties. Aircraft noise, industrial noise as well as high-intensity sonar. * Soil contamination : – occurs when chemicals are released by spill or underground leakage. Among the most significant soil contaminants are hydrocarbons, heavy metals, METE herbicides, pesticides and chlorinated hydrocarbons.

Radioactive contamination : resulting from 20th century activities in atomic physics, such as nuclear power generation and nuclear weapons research, manufacture and deployment. (See alpha emitters and actinides in the environment. ) * Thermal pollution : -is a temperature change in natural eater bodies caused by human influence, such as use of water as coolant in a power plant. * Visual pollution : -which can refer to the presence of overhead power lines, motorway billboards, scarred landforms (as from strip mining), open storage of trash, municipal solid waste or space debris. Water pollution : – by the discharge of wastewater from commercial and industrial waste (intentionally or through spills) into surface waters; discharges of untreated domestic sewage, and chemical contaminants, such as chlorine, from treated sewage; release of waste and contaminants into reface runoff flowing to surface waters (including urban runoff and agricultural runoff, which may contain chemical fertilizers and pesticides); waste disposal and leaching into groundwater; transportation and littering.

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Pollutants A pollutant is a waste material that pollutes air, water or soil. Three factors determine the severity of a pollutant: its chemical nature, the concentration and the persistence. * Pollutants are classified as: 1 . Degradable or Nan-persistent pollutants: Those which are rapidly broken down by natural processes e. G.

Domestic sewage, discarded vegetables, etc. 2. Slowly-degradable or persistent pollutants: These remain in the environment for many years in an unchanged condition and take decades or longer to degrade e. G. EDT and most plastics * Non-degradable pollutants: These cannot be degraded by natural processes.

They are difficult to eradicate and continue to accumulate. E. G. Toxic elements like lead or mercury and nuclear wastes Sources and causes Air pollution produced by ships may alter clouds, affecting global temperatures. Air pollution comes from both natural and human-made (anthropogenic) sources.

However, globally human-made pollutants from ambition, construction, mining, agriculture and warfare are increasingly significant in the air pollution equation. Motor vehicle emissions are one of the leading causes of air pollution. China, United States, Russia, India Mexico, and Japan are the world leaders in air pollution emissions. Principal stationary pollution sources include chemical plants, coal-fired power plants, oil refineries, petrochemical plants, nuclear waste disposal activity, incinerators, large livestock farms (dairy cows, pigs, poultry, etc. ), PVC factories, metals production factories, plastics factories, and other heavy industry.

Agricultural air pollution comes from contemporary practices which include clear felling and burning of natural vegetation as well as spraying of pesticides and herbicides. About 400 million metric tons of hazardous wastes are generated each year. The United States alone produces about 250 million metric tons. [ Americans constitute less than 5% of the world’s population, but produce roughly 25% of the world’s CA, and generate approximately 30% of world’s waste. Pollution can also be the consequence of a natural disaster. For example, hurricanes often involve water contamination from sewage, and theoretical spills from ruptured boats or automobiles. Larger scale and environmental damage is not uncommon when coastal oil rigs or refineries are involved. Some sources of pollution, such as nuclear power plants or oil tankers, can produce widespread and potentially hazardous releases when accidents occur. In the case of noise pollution the dominant source class is the motor vehicle, producing about ninety percent of all unwanted noise worldwide. Effects Human health Overview of main health effects on humans from some common types of pollution. Adverse air quality can kill many organisms including humans. Ozone pollution can cause respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease, throat inflammation, chest pain, and congestion. Water pollution causes approximately 14,000 deaths per day, mostly due to contamination of drinking water by untreated sewage in developing countries. An estimated 700 million Indians have no access to a proper toilet, and 1,000 Indian children die of diarrhea every day. [ Nearly 500 million Chinese lack access to safe drinking water. C 656,000 people die prematurely each year in China because of air pollution. In India, air pollution is believed to cause 527,700 totalities a year. Studies have estimated that the number of people killed annually in the US could be over 50,000. Oil spills can cause skin irritations and rashes. Noise pollution induces hearing loss, high blood pressure, stress, and sleep disturbance. Mercury has been linked to developmental deficits in children and neurological symptoms. Older people are major exposed to diseases induced by air pollution. Those with heart or lung disorders are under additional risk. Children and infants are also at serious risk. Lead and other heehaw metals have been shown to cause neurological problems. Chemical and radioactive substances can cause cancer and as well as birth defects. Environment pollution has been found to be present widely in the environment. There are a number of effects of this: * Pontifications describes situations where toxins (such as heavy metals) may pass through atrophic levels, becoming exponentially more concentrated in the process. * Carbon dioxide emissions cause ocean acidification, the ongoing decrease in the pH of the Earth’s oceans as CA becomes dissolved. * The emission of greenhouse gases leads to global warming which affects ecosystems in many ways. Invasive species can out compete native species and reduce biodiversity. Invasive plants can contribute debris and bimolecular (elephant) that can alter soil and chemical compositions of an environment, often reducing native species competitiveness. * Nitrogen oxides are removed from the air by rain and fertilize land which can change the species composition of ecosystems. * Smog and haze can reduce the amount of sunlight received by plants to carry out photosynthesis and leads to the production of troposphere ozone which damages plants. Soil can become infertile and unsuitable for plants. This will affect other organisms in the food web. * Sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides can cause acid rain which lowers the pH value of soil. Environmental health information The Toxicology and Environmental Health Information Program (TEPID) at the United States National Library of Medicine (ML) maintains a comprehensive toxicology and environmental health web site that includes access to resources produced by TEPID and by other government agencies and organizations. This web site includes links to databases, bibliographies, tutorials, and other scientific and consumer-oriented resources. TEPID also is responsible for the Toxicology Data Network (TOXINS) an integrated system of toxicology and environmental health databases that are available free of charge on the web. Regulation and monitoring To protect the environment from the adverse effects of pollution, many nations worldwide have enacted legislation to regulate various types of pollution as well as to mitigate the adverse effects of pollution. Pollution control Pollution control is a term used in environmental management. It means the control of emissions and effluents into air, water or soil. Without pollution intro, 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 urban runoff. Practices * Recycling * Reusing * Waste minimization * Mitigating * Preventing * Compost Pollution control devices * Dust collection systems * Backhouses * Cyclones Electrostatic precipitation * Scrubbers * Baffle spray scrubber * Cyclonic spray scrubber * Ejector venture scrubber * Mechanically aided scrubber * Spray tower * Wet scrubber * Sewage treatment * Sedimentation (Primary treatment) * Activated sludge batterers (Secondary treatment; also used for industrial wastewater) * Aerated lagoons * Constructed wetlands (also used for urban runoff) * Industrial wastewater treatment * API oil-water separators * Filterers * Dissolved air flotation (DEAF) * powdered activated carbon treatment * alliteration * Vapor recovery systems * Phototypesetting Perspectives The earliest precursor of pollution generated by life forms would have been a natural function of their existence. The attendant consequences on viability and population levels fell within the sphere of natural selection. These would have included the demise of a population locally or ultimately, species extinction. Processes that were untenable would have resulted in a new balance brought about by changes and adaptations. At the extremes, for any form of life, consideration of pollution is superseded by that of survival. For human kind, the factor of technology is a distinguishing and critical inconsideration, both as an enabler and an additional source of byproducts. Short of survival, human concerns include the range from quality of life to health hazards. Since science holds experimental demonstration to be definitive, modern treatment of toxicity or environmental harm involves defining a level at which an effect is observable. Common examples of fields where practical measurement is crucial include automobile emissions control, industrial exposure (e. G. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Peels), toxicology (e. G. LEAD), and medicine (e. G. Medication and addition doses). “The solution to pollution is dilution”, is a dictum which summarizes a traditional approach to pollution management whereby sufficiently diluted pollution is not harmful. It is well-suited to some other modern, locally scoped applications such as laboratory safety procedure and hazardous material release emergency management. But it assumes that the diluting is in virtually unlimited supply for the application or that resulting dilutions are acceptable in all cases. Such simple treatment for environmental pollution on a wider scale might have had greater merit in earlier centuries hen physical survival was often the highest imperative, human population and densities were lower, technologies were simpler and their brood cuts more benign. But these are often no longer the case. Furthermore, advances have enabled measurement of concentrations not possible before. The use of statistical methods in evaluating outcomes has given currency to the principle of probable harm in cases where assessment is warranted but resorting to deterministic models is impractical or infeasible. In addition, consideration of the environment beyond direct impact on human beings has gained prominence. Yet in the absence of a superseding principle, this older approach predominates practices throughout the world. It is the basis by which to gauge concentrations of effluent for legal release, exceeding which penalties are assessed or restrictions applied. One such superseding principle is contained in modern hazardous waste laws in developed countries, as the process of diluting hazardous waste to make it non-hazardous is usually a regulated treatment process. Migration from pollution dilution to elimination in many cases can be confronted by challenging economical and technological barriers. Greenhouse gases and global warming Historical and projected CA emissions by country. Energy Information Administration. Source: Carbon dioxide, while vital for photosynthesis, is sometimes referred to as pollution, because raised levels of the gas in the atmosphere are affecting the Earth ‘s climate. Disruption of the environment can also highlight the connection between areas of pollution that would normally be classified separately, such as those of water and air. Recent studies have investigated the potential for long-term rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide to cause slight but critical increases in the acidity of ocean waters, and the Seibel effects of this on marine ecosystems. Most polluted places in the developing world The Blacksmith Institute, an international non-for-profit organization dedicated to eliminating life-threaten inning pollution in the developing world, issues an annual list of some Of the world’s Worst polluted places. In the 2007 issues the ten top nominees, already industrialized countries excluded, are located in Azerbaijan, China, India, Peru, Russia, Ukraine and Zambia. Air pollution takes toll on China’s tourism In this Jan. 29, 2013 photo, a man wears a mask on Attainment Square in thick haze in Beijing. China, one of the most visited countries in the world, has seen sharply fewer tourists this year, with worsening air pollution partly to blame. BEIJING ? China, one of the most visited countries in the world, has seen sharply fewer tourists this year ? with worsening air pollution partly to blame. Numbers of foreign visitors have declined following January’s “Airplanes,” when already eye-searing levels of smog soared to new highs. Tourists have been put off by news about smog and other problems, said grand Iliac of travel agency Studious in Munich, Germany. He said the number f people booking trips to China through his company has fallen 1 6 percent this year. “You are reading about smog. You are reading about political things,” said Iliac. “All the news which is coming from China concerning the non-tourist things are bad, frankly speaking. ” China is the world’s No. Destination for international travel after France and the United States. Weakness in visitor numbers could hurt government efforts to reduce reliance on trade-driven manufacturing by promoting cleaner service industries such as tourism. Foreign visitors are outnumbered by Chinese tourists but spend more. The decline could be long-term if Beijing fails to make visible progress in combating pollution, experts say. That China’s air and water are badly polluted following three decades of breakneck growth is not news. But January’s record-setting bout of smog got worldwide news coverage and was so bad some longtime foreign residents left the country. From January to June, the total number of foreign visitors, including business travelers and residents, entering China declined by 5 percent to just under 13 million compared with the same period last year, according to the China National Tourism Administration. Overall, visitors from Asia, Australia, Europe and the Americas all declined. In Beijing, with major attractions including the Great Wall and the Imperial Palace, the drop is even more striking. The number of foreign tourists visiting the Chinese capital fell by 15 percent in the first six months of the year to 1. 9 million, according to the Beijing Tourism Administration. The China National Tourism Administration acknowledges a decline in foreign tourists to China as a whole, and in cities including Beijing, Shanghai and Examine, a prosperous port city in the southeast. It blames the lobar economic slowdown and a stronger Chinese currency and says China’s tourism image has been hurt by the emergence of HON. bird flu, air pollution and dead pigs found floating in Shanghais main river. The city of Aware in central Japan canceled a student exchange trip due to bad air. Eighteen Japanese students were due to visit the eastern coastal city of Shagging under an annual exchange program that goes back 30 years. Such trips might resume next year if conditions improve, said an employee of Aras’s city hall, Toshiba Nuking. Beijing official air quality reports show improvement ever recent years. But Steven Andrews, an environmental and legal consultant, said other data show a decline. An analysis of U. S. Embassy readings of smaller, more harmful airborne particles, show this years pollution is significantly worse than in the past three years, Andrews said. Begging’s city government only started publicly releasing air quality data in January 201 2 that measured PM. 5, or fine particles smaller than 2. 5 micrometers in diameter. They can enter deep into the lungs and can cause more damage. They are considered a more accurate reflection of air quality than other pollutants. According to Andrews’ calculations, the average PM. 5 reading in the first half of 201 3 was about 118 micrograms per cubic meter, compared with 95 last year and 89 in 201 1 . “In other words, so far this year the air pollution is about 25 percent worse than the first half of last year,” he said. Total numbers of foreigners to Beijing rose in January by 13 percent compared with a year earlier. But following news reports of January’s smog, they dropped in February by 37 percent compared with February 2012. In June, the number of foreigners to the Chinese capital was down by about 1 9 recent from a year ago, according to the Beijing Tourism Administration. The biggest drop was among Japanese visitors ? 55 percent fewer came to the capital in the first six months. The number of Americans, the biggest single group Of foreign visitors, declined 4 percent to just under 370,000. How long the tourist decline lasts is linked to how quickly the smog clears, economists suggest. Air and water pollution from factories and cars is the outcome of successful economic development and “difficult to control because it is difficult or politically infeasible to identify responsible parties,” aid Tim Darrell, former director of the Center for Sustainable Tourism at Arizona State university. “Thus the air pollution trends in China will be difficult to reverse and their impacts will be significantly negative on the tourism industry,” he said. These impacts could be reversed if “the government can make significant improvements in air quality and enthusiastically convey these improvements to international travelers. ” Other economists in the U. S. Re studying data from 18 Chinese provinces from 1999 to 2010 that suggest air pollution hurts levels of foreign visitors. A asters degree thesis by Chinese student Congo Hung at the University of San Francisco was the starting point. She estimated that a 1 percent rise in air pollution will lower the number of foreign tourist arrivals by about 1. 2 percent. The Chinese government has announced ambitious new anti- pollution measures but people whose jobs depend on foreign tourists aren’t hopeful. The sales manager of the Cumming Garden Hotel, near Attainment Square in central Beijing said guest numbers are down. She said the next three months usually are a busy period but if the slump continues, the hotel sight cut prices. We’re still not very much confident about having many inbound tourists next year,” said the manager, who would give only her surname, Wang. Pollution in Lack-M©gigantic at high levels, study says Potential carcinogen found at 394,444 times above normal limit An environmental group is criticizing the government for its handling of the Lack- M©gigantic, Queue. , cleanup, and says the province is not releasing enough information about the environmental contamination. Nearly 5. 7 million liters Of crude oil spilled out of derailed train cars and leached into the water, soil ND air of Lack-M©gigantic following the July 6 disaster. But the government has yet to release any information about the potentially harmful contaminants in that oil and their effect on the environment. The Quebec environmental group Socio©t© pour vainer la pollution (SSP) took matters into its own hands and tested samples from the Chased©re River, which runs through town, a week after the train derailment. About 5. 7 million liters of crude oil spilled into the air, water and soil in Lack-M©gigantic, Queue. (CB) The SSP released those results today, which suggest a severe impact on water quality and soil in the effected area. The analysis suggests extremely high levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, a figure 394,444 times the standard acceptable for surface waters mandated by the provincial government. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are potential carcinogens materials commonly found in crude Oil. The toxicity of this oil is quite high, which means people have to take extra precautions during cleanup,” said Daniel Green, co-president of the SSP. As well, the concentration of arsenic detected on the water’s surface is said to have exceeded the government’s acceptable standard by 28 times. The SSP worked in collaboration with Greenback on the study. The organization acknowledged that “because of its limited resources,” it was unable to perform the chemical analyses required to identify all the toxins, but said it hoped to carry out a second round of tests. Concerns about recontamination The results suggest that the ecosystem could be facing long-term consequences, according to Green. He said many of the contaminants might have settled along the bottom of the river, and if the oil isn’t removed before winter, the spring melt could recontamination the shoreline. Floating barriers ere set up along the Chased©re River after the derailment to stop the spread of oil. (CB) But an environmental assessment expert with McGill University said it’s possible the concentration is not as widespread as it seems. Proof. Michel A. Boucher said he thinks it’s more likely the oil sank to several pockets along the bottom of the Chased©re River. Either way, he said, the government should be more transparent. “l don’t see why this would be contentious material. I don’t think it’s a public security issue. Frankly, can’t give you an answer,” Boucher said. Waiting for answers from the province Green said the people of Lack-M©gigantic should have access to the information they need to protect themselves. So far, information about the exact chemical makeup of the oil has not been made public. The Transportation Safety Board and the Environment Ministry have yet to release the results of their tests. CB News contacted the office of Environment Minister Yves-François Blanched, but the ministry was not willing to comment on the findings. “They’ve done extensive sampling ? air, water and soil, and we’ve yet to see any results from the government on this environmental catastrophe,” Green said. Feds fining Columbia $1. Million for pollution Federal officials plan to assess $476,400 in fines against the city and require another SSL million to address flooding and cleanse parts of three major streams that flow into Columbians rivers: Rocky Branch, Gill’s Creek and Smith Branch, according to a proposed consent agreement posted on the city’s website. Most importantly, the EPA consent decree establishes a timeline on which to make improvements and assess further penalties if the city does not meet those target dates. While Columbia has had plans to make sewer system upgrades, the EPA order would leave the city less discretion on when o make repairs. That’s what really gives this teeth,” Congealer Riverside Bill Strangler said of the EPA consent decree. ‘This lays out what has to be done and when it has to be done. ” ‘With every incremental decrease in sewer spills and improvements to the wastewater plant, its an important improvement for water quality in our rivers. ” In the next 18 months to two years, the city must come up with an array of plans to address sewer system problems, then begin work to make repairs and improvements, according to the EPA consent order. The EPA is taking action because it says Columbia “has elated and continues to violate” the federal Clean Water Act, established some 40 years ago to protect and clean up polluted waterways. The agency’s consent decree also says the city has violated its wastewater discharge permit, as well as the S. C. Pollution Control Act. The decree says Columbia has reported “numerous” sewer overflows and other violations in the past five years. An attempt to reach EPA officials was unsuccessful Monday, but city officials were generally upbeat, despite the Pea’s enforcement action. Columbia has struggled for years to maintain its sewer system and has had increasing difficulty because the system is so old. The city has drawn fire for diverting millions of dollars from its water and sewer fund for non-water-and- sewer projects. Officials said they are working on improvements. The city has been diligently working to reduce the number of sanitary sewer overflows,” Columbia public awareness coordinator Victoria Kramer said, noting that the city’s efforts have led to an average annual drop of 26 percent in sewer overflows since 2008. Columbia officials have in recent years committed to spend about $500 million upgrading the water and system. And City Council is now discussing spending another $500 million, which is to be funded in part by rising water and Sewer rates. Last year, council approved and then eased rate hikes that caused an uproar among its larger customers. The rates were based on the need to generate $100 million yearly to meet the Pea’s requirements and to accommodate a growing population. Columbians wastewater system is one of the largest in South Carolina. Its treatment plant has capacity to discharge 60 million gallons per day, while it’s sewer collection system has about 1 , 1 00 miles of piping. City officials say they’ve already made significant investments” in upgrading the sewer system, including a $40 million improvement to the treatment plant. The federal order is not final because the city must still sign off on it. Council will discuss approving an ordinance Tuesday that authorizes execution of the consent decree. Consent decrees typically are negotiated settlements between the EPA and those it accuses of violating federal pollution laws.

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