Take a sip, take a swim, but take a moment and think what may be in that water.
Water pollution is everywhere and we may come in contact with it more then one may think.
Water pollution does not just occur when a big tanker has a spill, but when we see or hear about those incidents it helps us remember how precious our water sources are.
What It Boils Down To
Water pollution is more then just dirty water. A good definition of water pollution would be any biological, physical, or chemical change in the quality of the water that has a harmful effect to any living thing that uses, lives in, or drinks it.
There are different classes or categories of water pollution, which include:
- Disease-causing agents, such as bacteria, viruses, parasitic worms, etc. These enter the sewage systems and untreated waste.
- Oxygen-demanding agents which are wastes that can be decomposed by oxygen-requiring bacteria. When large amounts of decomposing bacteria are trying to breakdown these wastes it is using the oxygen in the water, which depletes the supply needed by the fish, so they in turn die.
- Water-soluble inorganic pollutants that make water unfit to drink and cause death to aquatic life. Examples of these would be acids, salts, and toxic metals.
- Water-soluble phosphates and nitrates. These agents cause excessive growth of algae and other plants that deplete the much needed oxygen supply.
- Organic compounds. Just because the word organic is there, does not make it healthy. Oil, plastics, and pesticides are in this category and these are harmful to all humans, plants, and animals in the water.
- Water-soluble radioactive compounds, usually associated with illegal dumping; these can cause birth defects, cancers, and genetic damage.
Water Pollution Solutions
All the information can be overwhelming and it may seem that all hope is lost but one should consider that there are standards that have been put into place that did not exist before. However, we should ask what we can do to help.
A few helpful suggestions include:
- Waste not, want not – The lack of water can be just as harmful as the possible toxins found. It is best to use smart water consumption, like not running your sprinklers in the heat of the day, using water smart appliances, and don’t let the water run constantly while brushing your teeth.
- Chemical charade – Toxins and chemicals do not make the house cleaner and now thankfully there are more choices on the market that will allow you to make smart choices. Purchase items that do not include phosphates and other toxins, so the wastewater is entered back into the ground as chemical free as possible.
- Crackdowns – Stricter laws on drinking water standards, illegal dumping, and possible environmentally friendly business tax breaks can be an enormous help. Get involved locally with new bills because the power of the vote can help out our water supply for today and for tomorrow.
Water is one of our most indispensable resources and that our world is covered by a large percentage of it should not be taken for granted. We need to take a daily consideration for our own actions to help preserve our supply and protect our waterways. The effects of pollution do not stop at bad drinking water, but can and do lead to death. If we do not take action, then that will become our reality.