River pollution comes from a variety of different sources, including agricultural operations, industrial discharge, wastewater treatment plants and storm water runoff, that carry pollutants into waterways. Sources are classified as point sources if the pollution comes from a single, identifiable source and nonpoint sources if the pollution is the result of runoff over a wide area. Since rivers draw from many sources, they may contain many different pollutants.
Point-source pollution is the easiest type of river pollution to correct, as it can be traced to a single source. An industrial operation may accidentally discharge untreated pollutants into a river, or a flood at a wastewater treatment plant may cause sewage to flow into a waterway. These spills can be massive and release large amounts of pollutants over a short period of time, but once the problem is corrected, the river can eventually recover.
Nonpoint-source pollution is much more difficult to deal with. As rain or floodwater flows over land, it picks up any contaminants present. Oil and grease from roadways, excess nitrogen and pesticides from farmland, heavy metals from mining and scrapping operations and loose sediment may find their way into the river, carried through the water cycle by runoff.Learn More
Some causes of radioactive pollution include nuclear power plants, energy factories, mining, improper waste disposal, nuclear testing, terrorism and other human activities. Radioactive pollution can enter the environment by water, air and soil contamination. Regardless of its origin, radioactive pollution is particularly hazardous to animals and the environment.Full Answer >
India, according to the World Health Organization, tops the list of the world's most polluted countries. India's cities contain large amounts of air pollution, especially Delhi. This pollution accumulates in the air and water bodies through burning fossil fuels, vehicle emissions and particulate matter from industrial exhaust.Full Answer >
Effects of pollution on the Earth include environmental deterioration, impacts on the health of living organisms, global warming, depletion of the ozone layer and reduced efficiency or infertility of farm lands and crop fields. The sources of pollution vary widely, and so do its effects. Pollution affects all areas of the Earth, including the water, soil and atmosphere, on microscopic and macroscopic levels, causing immediate harm or long-term damage.Full Answer >
A common cause of dirty water includes the dumping of waste and sewage into water supplies. The practice of open defecation that seeps into water supplies is also a common factor of dirty and unsafe water.Full Answer >