The Pollution in Rivers is Increasing - Seeker's Thoughts

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The Pollution in Rivers is Increasing


The Pollution in Rivers is Increasing


Each year, unsafe drinking water affects roughly one billion people worldwide. Global warming reduces river waters' ability to hold onto dissolved oxygen, killing off fish and aquatic life that thrive in these waters.


Too much nitrogen and phosphorus contributes to algal blooms in lakes that contaminate drinking water sources, while high nitrate levels may contribute to "blue baby syndrome" among infants.




Agriculture is responsible for much of the pollution found in rivers. It releases large quantities of agrochemicals, organic matter, drug residues, pathogens, sediments and salts into waterways; and contributes to excessive nitrogen and phosphorus pollution through excessive nitrogen fertilizer use that leads to eutrophication resulting in fish kills as well as aquatic plant deaths and even species extinctions.


At present, agricultural pollution comes primarily in the form of sewage, oil spills, animal waste and fertilizer - each having potentially lethal consequences on plants, animals and humans alike - possibly poisoning people, making them sick and even leading to their death. Furthermore, such pollutant may contaminate soil, air and water systems.


Rivers are crucial sources of freshwater for plants and animals alike, playing an integral role in ecosystems. Rivers collect and transport various pollutants including organic matter, phosphorus, nitrogen pathogens and heavy metals - in addition to being useful tools for irrigation or flood control.


Polluting agricultural industries affect us all - in fact, their pollution of waterways is one of the leading sources of harm to rivers, streams, lakes and wetlands, third in oceans and an ongoing issue in inland lakes. Main causes include erosion and runoff from agricultural fields, pastures and septic systems.


Farming presents several major threats to fish and wildlife habitats. Eutrophication results in rapid algal blooms that deplete oxygen in rivers, which kill invertebrates and suffocate fish, while fertilized land washed into streams can clog stream bottoms and choke their gills with sediments, leading to additional problems for these aquatic creatures.


Maintaining agricultural pollution control may be challenging, but it can be done. Farmers should only use enough pesticides and chemical fertilizers necessary for an acceptable crop yield. They should plant grasses and trees around their fields to help prevent soil erosion and runoff of nutrients into waterways; additionally they should try limiting how often their land is tilled.



Industrial Waste


Rivers are vital components of our ecosystem, which carry water from upland areas down into bodies of water like oceans or lakes. Unfortunately, their health can become imperiled in numerous ways.

Farmers use fertilizers and pesticides on crops to speed their growth, but these chemicals can wash into rivers when it rains, increasing nitrate and phosphate levels in them and leading to algae blooms that consume all available oxygen - this process is known as eutrophication and it has the potential to kill fish, birds, mammals, etc.


Factory emissions into rivers often include dangerous pollutants that are difficult to degrade and accumulate in river sediments, like cyanide, zinc, copper, lead and mercury toxins which are known to poison fish and crustaceans that live there - possibly killing them altogether; additionally these toxicants contaminating drinking water supplies and making people ill can make people sick as well.


Each year, thousands of tons of toxic waste is dumped into rivers as sewage, chemical waste and industrial byproducts unsuitable for landfill disposal are dumped into them. Some of this waste comes from large industrial companies equipped with their own wastewater treatment plants while some comes from smaller businesses not equipped with these systems.


These pollutants enter rivers and travel downstream where they contaminate bays, estuaries and eventually the ocean - eventually ending up as disease carriers such as cholera, giardia and typhoid; roughly 1 billion people become sick due to drinking polluted water every year.


Some pollution comes from industrial chemicals that aren't properly regulated; one such solvent, 1,4-Dioxane, which seeps into rivers and drinking water supplies is linked with cancer and altered brain function; it also appears in mammal fat tissue and mother's milk. While eliminating all industrial waste could help lower pollution, even partial reduction can help.



Global Warming



Rivers are natural waterways that carry rainwater into lakes, seas and oceans - as well as providing people with drinking, irrigation and industry water supplies. Rivers also play an integral part in dispersing pollution by dissipating it as it flows, but when pollutants build up they can harm both people and animals as well as ecosystems as well as the economic potential of affected areas.


As global temperatures increase, dissolved oxygen (DO) saturation levels in rivers are predicted to fall and lower overall water quality. DO levels are one of the key indicators used by the Environmental Protection Agency's Water Quality Standards to measure quality of aquatic environments, supporting healthy fish populations as well as contributing to an ecological balance in aquatic systems.


Climate change and rising temperatures have contributed to lower dissolved oxygen levels in rivers by hindering natural processes that convert carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide to water. Furthermore, rivers' ability to absorb nutrient pollution from both land and air sources has diminished due to climate change.


Human activity poses the greatest threat to river quality. Rivers and streams become polluted with industrial waste, toxic chemicals, sewage waste and other substances from factories that lack proper waste management systems; additionally, polluted waters often contain excess nitrogen and phosphorus from agricultural, urban or suburban runoff that create algal blooms or lead to increased nitrate levels in drinking water sources.


Another challenge presented by global warming is sediment pollution. When soils erode due to global warming, loosening sediment increases and its discharge into rivers increases. Furthermore, construction works and clearing away of trees and vegetation can speed this up even more, increasing erosion even more and leading to an accelerating increase of sediment loads in many rivers over the past decade - leading many to double their average sediment load over the period studied.


Some pollutants can be removed naturally through the purification process in rivers and lakes. Heavy metals are removed when suspended clay particles have a slight electric charge that attracts metal atoms to them; then when these particles settle out of the water they take with them the metal. Other pollutants, like agricultural and urban runoff containing nitrates or phosphates that remain in the water are converted to greenhouse gas emissions by microorganisms.


Human Activity


Human activity has left rivers worldwide polluted with human waste and debris from industrial, urban and domestic settings alike, including industrial sewage water discharge, domestic sewage water discharge and animal droppings, as well as chemicals like lead, cadmium and mercury found in its waters. Untreated sewage water discharged into rivers often serves as the main cause of river pollution as it contains harmful bacteria which spread diseases like Typhoid Fever, Dysentery or Cholera when consumed directly by people.

People depend on rivers for drinking, washing and cooking purposes; yet often fail to dispose of their sewage or garbage properly, leaving hazardous chemicals to seep into groundwater and pollute lakes and rivers as well as entering food chains and reaching toxic levels in animals that consume these products - ultimately reaching toxic levels in us too.

Agriculture also contributes to river pollution. Farmers use fertilizers and pesticides to speed the growth of their crops faster, but these chemicals may wash into rivers where they increase concentrations of nitrates and phosphates which lead to rapid proliferation of algae blooms that destroy biodiversity of a river ecosystem. This process is known as "eutrophication."

Every year, drinking unsafe water makes approximately one billion people sick with diseases such as diarrhoea, typhoid and cholera - particularly in poorer nations where residents may live near polluting industries.

Rivers provide people with their primary source of water in many parts of the world and thus serve as essential resources. Unfortunately, due to human activities they are becoming increasingly polluted. This poses serious threats to environmental wellbeing while endangering millions of lives globally.

Over the last century, global population growth has created an increase in freshwater demand; unfortunately there aren't enough resources to keep pace. As a result, quality has degraded significantly and negatively impacted economies globally; in time this may result in major humanitarian crises.

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