Definition of water pollution
The addition of harmful chemicals to natural water. Sources of water pollution in the United States include industrial waste, run-off from fields treated with chemical fertilizers, and run-off from areas that have been mined.
Words nearby water pollution
MORE ABOUT WATER POLLUTION
What is water pollution?
Water pollution is the addition of harmful chemicals to clean water.
Water is easily polluted because of the number of substances that can easily dissolve into it. These include toxic substances such as arsenic and cyanide, which are used in a variety of fertilizers and pesticides. Water pollution can also be caused by other harmful substances, such as oil or garbage being dumped into the water.
Water pollution can happen to both ground water (water that seeps into the ground from rain and other sources) and surface water (the water found in oceans, lakes, and rivers). Water pollution is often both disastrous and expensive because water can easily spread pollution to a huge area and the pollutants dissolve into the water itself, becoming nearly impossible to remove entirely.
In the United States, water pollution has several main causes that include:
- Agriculture. Agriculture is the leading cause of water pollution worldwide. Fertilizers, pesticides, and animal waste enter runoff that seeps into clean water, filling it with harmful toxins and bacteria.
- Sewage. The United States alone dumps around 850 billion gallons of uncleaned sewage back into the water supply every year. This dirty water includes pollutants such as human waste, metals from industrial runoff, and other toxic chemicals.
Oil and radioactive waste. These pollutants are often released (accidentally or otherwise) into the water supply as part of industry despite attempts by environmental agency regulations to prevent it.
Why is water pollution important?
The first records of the phrase water pollution come from around 1855. It combines the words water, the clear, drinkable liquid made of hydrogen and oxygen, and pollution, the introduction of harmful substances into the environment.
Water pollution is an incredibly serious issue because clean, drinkable water is not an endless resource. Based on current usage, it is estimated that nearly 6 billion people won’t have access to enough water by 2050. Without lowering the amount of water pollution, that number can only grow.
Beyond that, water pollution also causes serious damage to the environment. Water pollution can cause eutrophication, in which the algae population explodes and takes vital nutrients away from other marine life. Water pollution can also kill vast numbers of wildlife directly by poisoning from toxic substances like mercury or physical harm from debris like plastics and other trash. Needless to say, toxic substances also pose serious health risks to humans as well.
Did you know … ?
According to scientific estimates, humans have access to less than 1 percent of the world’s available freshwater. This is further reduced by water pollution, which highlights how important it is to prevent water from being polluted.
What are real-life examples of water pollution?
Many people are aware of how serious a problem water pollution is.
— UN Environment Programme (@UNEP) September 5, 2012
Reckless exploitation of limited resources, especially endangered marine species must be strictly prevented.
We must also address burning concerns of pollution of marine and fresh water pollution. #MPEDA
— Vice President of India (@VPSecretariat) August 30, 2019
What other words are related to water pollution?
True or False?
Water pollution comes from harmful chemicals that get into water.
How to use water pollution in a sentence
Fluoride first entered an American water supply through a rather inelegant technocratic scheme.
When cities started adding chlorine to their water supplies, in the early 1900s, it set off public outcry.
Before anti-vaxxers, there were anti-fluoriders: a group who spread fear about the anti-tooth decay agent added to drinking water.
Placed in drinking water, fluoride can serve people who otherwise have poor access to dental care.
In secret, before the referendum, the council went ahead and fluoridated the water anyway.
Urbanity ushers in water that needs no apology, and gives a zest to the worst vintage.Pearls of Thought|Maturin M. Ballou
The two women had no intention of bathing; they had just strolled down to the beach for a walk and to be alone and near the water.
Mrs. Woodbury paints in oils and water-colors; the latter are genre scenes, and among them are several Dutch subjects.Women in the fine arts, from the Seventh Century B.C. to the Twentieth Century A.D.|Clara Erskine Clement
But there was a breeze blowing, a choppy, stiff wind that whipped the water into froth.
She threw out her arms as if swimming when she walked, beating the tall grass as one strikes out in the water.