As per Wikipedia, “Pollution” is the introduction of contaminants in the natural environment which cause adverse change.
In simple language, pollution is something which which harms the environment. It contaminates the air we breathe, the water we drink and the food we eat.
There are several forms of pollution, which imbalance our natural ecosystem.
The various forms are land pollution, air pollution, water pollution, radioactive pollution and noise pollution.
My this research is focussing on Land Pollution extensively.
You think of Land pollution , you think of trash.
Land pollution in a layman’s word is the pollution or contamination of the land he lives on. It is the destruction of the earth’s land surfaces as a result of irresponsible human activity.
It occurs when waste is not disposed of properly, or can occur when humans throw chemicals onto the soil in the form of pesticides, insecticides and fertilisers during agricultural practices. Exploitation of minerals through mining activities has also contributed to the destruction of the earth’s surface.Release of industrial waste and deforestation also exploits the soil. Since plants can’t grow properly, they can’t hold the soil and this leads to soil erosion.
Causes of Land Pollution
There are many causes of land pollution from the trash we throw away in our homes to waste produced at giant factories. Sometimes chemicals from the trash can contaminate the soil and eventually the groundwater we need for drinking.
Garbage – India produces 150 million tonnes of trash every day! That’s a lot of trash. Some of this trash gets recycled, but much of it ends up in a landfill or on the ground.
Mining – Mining can directly destroy the land, producing large holes in the ground and causing erosion. It can also release toxic chemicals into the air and soil.
Farming – We all need farms to eat, but agriculture has destroyed many ecosystems and animal habitats. Farming also produces a lot of pollution in the form of chemicals such as pesticides and herbicides. Animal waste from livestock can also pollute the soil and, eventually, the water supply.
Factories – Many factories produce a significant amount of garbage and waste. Some of this waste is in the form of damaging chemicals. There are regulations in some countries to prevent harmful chemicals from getting dumped directly onto the land, but this is not the case in many countries.
Effects of Land Pollution
There can be catastrophic consequences of land pollution in relation to humans, animals, water and soils. The effects are even worse if the garbage is not separated into organic, reusable and recyclable waste.
Contaminated lands and environments can:
– Cause problems in the human respiratory system.
– Cause problems on the skin.
The toxic materials that pollute the soil can get into the human body directly by:
– Coming into contact with the skin.
– Being washed into water sources like reservoirs and rivers.
– Eating fruits and vegetables that have been grown in polluted soil.
– Breathing in polluted dust or particles.
Dump sites and landfills also come with serious problems like
– Very bad smell and odour in the town.
– Landfills breed rodents like rats, mice and insects, who in turn transmit diseases.
– Landfills in towns do not attract tourists to the town.
– Many landfills are always burning and they cause further air pollution.
HOW CAN YOU BE THE KEY TO PREVENT LAND POLLUTION
Like many other challenges, the best way to solve problems is to understand it. Learning about it is the greatest step forward.
Here are a few other tips on how you can help reduce land pollution:
- People should be educated and made aware of the harmful effects of littering. Discuss with friends and family and talk about it.
- Take a step forward. Form a garbage disposal committee in your apartment complex. Educate people, especially helpers and maids on segregation of biodegradable and recyclable waste.
- Promote green. Take initiatives with family and friends and plant trees. Even if you have space constraints, don’t worry. A balcony too can also be turned into a mini garden, soothing to your eyes and soothing for the ecosystem too.
- Eat Organic food and Seasonal food. These foods are free from pesticides and harmful chemicals. Consumption of these foods will encourage natural farming.
The greatest prevention to Land Pollution is the three “R”s’:
The best way to manage waste is to not produce it. This can be done by shopping carefully and being aware of a few guidelines:
- Avoid over-packaged goods, especially ones packed with several materials such as foil, paper, and plastic. They are difficult to recycle, plus you pay more for the package.
- Avoid disposable goods, such as paper plates, cups, napkins, razors, and lighters. Throwaways contribute to the problem, and cost more because they must be replaced again and again.
- Buy durable goods – ones that are well-built or that carry good warranties. They will last longer, save money in the long run and save landfill space.
- Use cloth napkins instead of paper napkins.
- At work or school make two-sided photocopies/prints whenever needed.
- Use electronic media more to avoid paper wastage.
It makes economic and environmental sense to reuse products. Sometimes it takes creativity:
- Reuse products for the same purpose. Save paper and plastic bags, and repair broken appliances, furniture and toys.
- Reuse products in different ways. Use a empty coffee jar to store kitchen essentials. Use biscuit tins to store your knick-knacks.
- Sell old clothes, appliances, toys, and furniture in garage sales or ads, or donate them to charities.
- Use resealable containers rather than plastic wrap.
- Use a ceramic coffee mug/ceramic plates instead of paper cups or paper plates.
- Reuse grocery bags or bring your own cloth bags to the store. Do not take a bag from the store unless you need one.
Recycling is a series of steps that takes a used material and processes, remanufactures, and sells it as a new product. You can begin recycling at home and at work:
- Buy products made from recycled material. Look for the recycling symbol or ask store managers or salesmen. The recycling symbol means one of two things – either the product is made of recycled material, or the item can be recycled.
- Check collection centres and voluntary pickup services to see what they accept, and begin collecting those materials. These can include metal cans, newspapers, paper products, glass, plastics and oil. You can take initiative and tie up with these centres to come to your apartment complex once in month to collect recyclable trash.
- Use recycled paper for letterhead, copier paper, newsletter, gift wrapping and art & craft projects.
Important facts about land pollution:
- Have you ever thought that after garbage gets collected from everyone’s house in India it becomes more than than 45 million tonnes everyday ?
- Can you believe that 5.3 million tonnes of plastic waste is generated in India everyday?
- Did all of you know that 1.6 billion tonnes of waste and overburden from coal, iron ore, limestone and bauxite have added to environment pollution ?
- Do you know that Vapi in Gujarat and Sukinda in Orissa are among the world’s 10 most polluted cities ?
- It is unbelievable right that 3 million trucks dump trash and garbage daily in landfills in India.