Pollution has risen to become a huge epidemic in today’s world. Ever since the industrial revolution and the birth of factories and motorized vehicles continue to grow at a rapid rate which highly benefits most humans on earth with top of the line new electronics, faster cars to the smaller things like plastic bags for groceries and paper to simply take notes. Unfortunately with such a huge benefit comes a price to pay, in this case, one that is slowly destroying the world all humans live on, pollution.
Is pollution really a major problem to earth? Should humans be concerned about the products they buy and how they are disposed of? How does pollution affect our lives in the future? I will be discussing the detrimental effects pollution has on our environment and ecosystems, including living animals and humans. Pollution does not only affect our planet itself but every single living organism that resides on earth.
There are many different types of pollutions around the world.
It ranges from water, air and even light pollution. Air pollution would be the main pollution that poses as the most threatful to us humans as we breathe in air all day long throughout our whole lifetime. Air pollution can come from anywhere such as smog from typically any motorized vehicle like boats, planes, cars. Factories and refineries often emit chemicals into the air that makes it hazardous. Not only are these types harmful to us as people but they as well destroy the ozone which protects everything on earth from harmful radiation.
Along with water pollution such as trash and plastics or waste in general. Pollution such as these do not disintegrate and eventually end up polluting the ocean. Lastly, there is light pollution which consist of city lights which leads to brighter nights.
According to an article titled “A Review on Association of Air Pollution and Biomass fumes on the Respiratory System”; written by Pravallika Pagadala. Air pollution can affect anyone, but those who are suffering from lung, heart diseases and old age are more likely to be affected. Pollutants aggravate the symptoms of asthma in old people because of weak immune system ”. Not only is the air pollution limited to boats, cars and planes, it can come from Carbon Monoxide, Sulphur Dioxide and Nitrogen Monoxide. Carbon Monoxide can be a toxic gas that is emitted into the air, and according to Pravallika Pagadala if released per minute it can cause unconsciousness in about one hour and death in four hours. However with intense short term exposure to CO can lead to loss of consciousness was known by physicians in the late 19th century. It can be used as an anaesthetic.(pg.2) Sulphur dioxide is an acidic gas emitted indirectly proportional to the amount of sulphur in fuel. According to the article Sulphur Dioxide, can affect human health such as asthma and chronic lung diseases. Lastly Nitrogen Monoxide is formed during combustion process at high temperatures from the oxidation of nitrogen in air. Frequent exposure to high concentration of NO causes airway irritation and consequent acute respiratory illness.(pg2) As you can see, these effects are very harmful and can cause many issues for people.
Water or ocean pollution mostly refers to man made items of which are non biodegradable, that sadly find its way to the ocean causing water to be filthy and dangerous to the animals who live within the ocean and any living organism that comes in contact with the water. In reference to “Maintaining Healthy Oceans Is Everyone’s Problem” by Dr. Devon Dublin, “As a result, the plastics that have been entering the oceans has reached an estimated 150 million metric tons. Apart from that, every year 8 million metric tons enter the oceans, adding to the existing figure”. Much plastic that makes its way to the ocean is most often mistaken for food by animals in which they die from consuming harmful objects that can not be broken down. according to Dr. Dublin, “observations of the dangers of plastic were made by veterinarians and conservationists when dead sea animals such as turtles, seabirds, and mammals were being found with plastics in their stomach or entangling them”. Although it may seem that water pollution does not do harm directly to humans, the aquatic animals consumes the trash which those animals can very well make it to our plates for dinner time.
Last but not least light pollution is the over use of outdoor lighting around the globe during the night in which causes the night sky to become brighter. It my not sound like much but can alter animal behavior, human health and ecological environments. Increase in light causes an animal’s behavior and sleeping pattern to completely go off balance. Having too much exposure to any type of light can be harmful as well. As claimed by Eric D. Lystrup, “Beyond healthy sleep patterns, numerous studies show correlations between reduced melatonin levels, as a result of a disrupted circadian rhythm and mood disorders, age-associated diseases, and even cancer.”[ 63] All types of pollution are unquestionably toxic whether witnessed firsthand like air pollution or second hand like water and ocean pollution. Each individual category of pollutions have their various effects.
Undoubtedly, pollution is atrocious, nevertheless numerous enormous companies are taking subsidiary action on helping reduce all types of contamination. Countless major companies are going green and eco friendly and spending millions of dollars to get their factors to produce clean air and less hazardous emissions. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, “ In the United States alone, factories emit 3 million tons of toxic chemicals into the land, air and water.” Innumerable grocery stores are now charging for plastic bags, on top of that the bags most stores offer are recycled. In some states for example, California now require big rig trucks and heavy machinery to be clean air certified to significantly decrease unsafe particles emitted into the air.
People may not think of pollution on a daily basis but in some way shape or form does it trace back ultimately on each individual’s decision to reduce trash and pollution. It is understandable that not everyone can afford recycled or eco friendly products such as hybrid cars, biodegradable cleaning products or recycled plastic products, but there are many ways to help reduce any type of pollution. For water pollution, helping recycle plastic bottles, supermarket plastic bags and making sure any other non biodegradable items coming across is being placed in the correct container when throwing trash away. Going green and eco friendly can also come with rewards, recycling centers around the world offer money in exchange for helping turn in recycling eligible products like plastic bottles to any type of computer hardware like motherboards and televisions. Air pollution can substantially cost more to help reduce the smog, however it mostly comes out to be more cost effective in the long run. Any type of hybrid vehicle great reduces the amount of emissions released into the environment and some fully electric vehicles produce no emissions and do not require gas, saving thousands of dollars. Light pollution can be solved by easily turning of lights when the sun goes down to darken the night sky and of course by turning off lights whenever possible, decreases the usage of electricity, resulting in lower electricity utility bills. No matter what type of pollution, the only way to greatly reduce the harmful effects is for the population to join together and contribute one small part each day.
If the world were not to consider pollution as a huge predicament, very soon would our environment, gunn health, food supply and the economy would face major changes. Changes to the environment would be immense, with rising temperatures, rising sea levels and the decrease in fresh water icebergs which would transform the land as we know it today. As the environment would begin to change, unfortunately it would not stop there. As stated by, Sciencing.com, “If no action were to help reduce the number of hazardous chemicals thrown in the air, the number of toxic chemicals released into the air would rapindlg increase and settle into plants and water sources. Animals eat the contaminated plants and drink the water. The poison then travels up the food chain and would eventually make into humans, from the edible plants and vegetables and animals that have been living off poisonous food sources.”