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Pollution
Pollution
is the introduction of contaminants into the natural environment that cause adverse change.[1] Pollution
Pollution
can take the form of chemical substances or energy, such as noise, heat or light. Pollutants, the components of pollution, can be either foreign substances/energies or naturally occurring contaminants. Pollution
Pollution
is often classed as point source or nonpoint source pollution. In 2015, pollution killed 9 million people in the world.[2][3] Major forms of pollution include: Air pollution, light pollution, littering, noise pollution, plastic pollution, soil contamination, radioactive contamination, thermal pollution, visual pollution, water pollution.

Contents

1 History 2 Urban pollution 3 Forms of pollution 4 Pollutants 5 Cost of pollution 6 Socially optimal level of pollution 7 Sources and causes 8 Effects

8.1 Human health 8.2 Environment 8.3 Environmental health
Environmental health
information 8.4 Worker productivity

9 Regulation and monitoring 10 Pollution
Pollution
control

10.1 Practices 10.2 Pollution control
Pollution control
devices

11 Perspectives 12 Greenhouse gases and global warming 13 Most polluting industries 14 World’s worst polluted places 15 See also 16 References 17 External links

History Air pollution
Air pollution
has always accompanied civilizations. Pollution
Pollution
started from prehistoric times, when man created the first fires. According to a 1983 article in the journal Science, "soot" found on ceilings of prehistoric caves provides ample evidence of the high levels of pollution that was associated with inadequate ventilation of open fires."[4] Metal forging appears to be a key turning point in the creation of significant air pollution levels outside the home. Core samples of glaciers in Greenland indicate increases in pollution associated with Greek, Roman, and Chinese metal production,[5] but at that time the pollution was comparatively small and could be handled by nature.[citation needed] Urban pollution

Air pollution
Air pollution
in the US, 1973

The burning of coal and wood, and the presence of many horses in concentrated areas made the cities the primary sources of pollution. The Industrial Revolution
Industrial Revolution
brought an infusion of untreated chemicals and wastes into local streams that served as the water supply. King Edward I of England
Edward I of England
banned the burning of sea-coal by proclamation in London
London
in 1272, after its smoke became a problem;[6][7] the fuel was so common in England that this earliest of names for it was acquired because it could be carted away from some shores by the wheelbarrow. It was the industrial revolution that gave birth to environmental pollution as we know it today. London
London
also recorded one of the earlier extreme cases of water quality problems with the Great Stink
Great Stink
on the Thames of 1858, which led to construction of the London
London
sewerage system soon afterward. Pollution
Pollution
issues escalated as population growth far exceeded viability of neighborhoods to handle their waste problem. Reformers began to demand sewer systems and clean water.[8] In 1870, the sanitary conditions in Berlin
Berlin
were among the worst in Europe. August Bebel
August Bebel
recalled conditions before a modern sewer system was built in the late 1870s:

"Waste-water from the houses collected in the gutters running alongside the curbs and emitted a truly fearsome smell. There were no public toilets in the streets or squares. Visitors, especially women, often became desperate when nature called. In the public buildings the sanitary facilities were unbelievably primitive....As a metropolis, Berlin
Berlin
did not emerge from a state of barbarism into civilization until after 1870."[9]

The primitive conditions were intolerable for a world national capital, and the Imperial German government brought in its scientists, engineers, and urban planners to not only solve the deficiencies, but to forge Berlin
Berlin
as the world's model city. A British expert in 1906 concluded that Berlin
Berlin
represented "the most complete application of science, order and method of public life," adding "it is a marvel of civic administration, the most modern and most perfectly organized city that there is."[10] The emergence of great factories and consumption of immense quantities of coal gave rise to unprecedented air pollution and the large volume of industrial chemical discharges added to the growing load of untreated human waste. Chicago
Chicago
and Cincinnati
Cincinnati
were the first two American cities to enact laws ensuring cleaner air in 1881. Pollution became a major issue in the United States
United States
in the early twentieth century, as progressive reformers took issue with air pollution caused by coal burning, water pollution caused by bad sanitation, and street pollution caused by the 3 million horses who worked in American cities in 1900, generating large quantities of urine and manure. As historian Martin Melosi notes, The generation that first saw automobiles replacing the horses saw cars as "miracles of cleanliness.".[11] By the 1940s, however, automobile-caused smog was a major issue in Los Angeles.[12] Other cities followed around the country until early in the 20th century, when the short lived Office of Air Pollution
Pollution
was created under the Department of the Interior. Extreme smog events were experienced by the cities of Los Angeles
Los Angeles
and Donora, Pennsylvania
Donora, Pennsylvania
in the late 1940s, serving as another public reminder.[13] Air pollution
Air pollution
would continue to be a problem in England, especially later during the industrial revolution, and extending into the recent past with the Great Smog
Smog
of 1952. Awareness of atmospheric pollution spread widely after World War II, with fears triggered by reports of radioactive fallout from atomic warfare and testing.[14] Then a non-nuclear event—the Great Smog
Smog
of 1952 in London—killed at least 4000 people.[15] This prompted some of the first major modern environmental legislation: the Clean Air Act of 1956. Pollution
Pollution
began to draw major public attention in the United States between the mid-1950s and early 1970s, when Congress passed the Noise Control Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act.[16]

Smog
Smog
Pollution
Pollution
in Taiwan

Severe incidents of pollution helped increase consciousness. PCB dumping in the Hudson River
Hudson River
resulted in a ban by the EPA on consumption of its fish in 1974. National news stories in the late 1970s—especially the long-term dioxin contamination at Love Canal starting in 1947 and uncontrolled dumping in Valley of the Drums—led to the Superfund legislation of 1980.[17] The pollution of industrial land gave rise to the name brownfield, a term now common in city planning. The development of nuclear science introduced radioactive contamination, which can remain lethally radioactive for hundreds of thousands of years. Lake Karachay—named by the Worldwatch Institute as the "most polluted spot" on earth—served as a disposal site for the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
throughout the 1950s and 1960s. Chelyabinsk, Russia, is considered the "Most polluted place on the planet".[18] Nuclear weapons
Nuclear weapons
continued to be tested in the Cold War, especially in the earlier stages of their development. The toll on the worst-affected populations and the growth since then in understanding about the critical threat to human health posed by radioactivity has also been a prohibitive complication associated with nuclear power. Though extreme care is practiced in that industry, the potential for disaster suggested by incidents such as those at Three Mile Island
Three Mile Island
and Chernobyl
Chernobyl
pose a lingering specter of public mistrust. Worldwide publicity has been intense on those disasters.[19] Widespread support for test ban treaties has ended almost all nuclear testing in the atmosphere.[20] International catastrophes such as the wreck of the Amoco Cadiz
Amoco Cadiz
oil tanker off the coast of Brittany
Brittany
in 1978 and the Bhopal disaster
Bhopal disaster
in 1984 have demonstrated the universality of such events and the scale on which efforts to address them needed to engage. The borderless nature of atmosphere and oceans inevitably resulted in the implication of pollution on a planetary level with the issue of global warming. Most recently the term persistent organic pollutant (POP) has come to describe a group of chemicals such as PBDEs and PFCs among others. Though their effects remain somewhat less well understood owing to a lack of experimental data, they have been detected in various ecological habitats far removed from industrial activity such as the Arctic, demonstrating diffusion and bioaccumulation after only a relatively brief period of widespread use. A much more recently discovered problem is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a huge concentration of plastics, chemical sludge and other debris which has been collected into a large area of the Pacific Ocean by the North Pacific Gyre. This is a less well known pollution problem than the others described above, but nonetheless has multiple and serious consequences such as increasing wildlife mortality, the spread of invasive species and human ingestion of toxic chemicals. Organizations such as 5 Gyres have researched the pollution and, along with artists like Marina DeBris, are working toward publicizing the issue. Pollution
Pollution
introduced by light at night is becoming a global problem, more severe in urban centres, but nonetheless contaminating also large territories, far away from towns.[21] Growing evidence of local and global pollution and an increasingly informed public over time have given rise to environmentalism and the environmental movement, which generally seek to limit human impact on the environment. Forms of pollution

The Lachine Canal
Lachine Canal
in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Blue drain and yellow fish symbol used by the UK Environment Agency
Environment Agency
to raise awareness of the ecological impacts of contaminating surface drainage.

The major forms of pollution are listed below along with the particular contaminant relevant to each of them:

Air pollution: the release of chemicals and particulates into the atmosphere. Common gaseous pollutants include carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and nitrogen oxides produced by industry and motor vehicles. Photochemical ozone and smog are created as nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbons react to sunlight. Particulate matter, or fine dust is characterized by their micrometre size PM10 to PM2.5.

Light pollution: includes light trespass, over-illumination and astronomical interference. Littering: the criminal throwing of inappropriate man-made objects, unremoved, onto public and private properties. Noise pollution: which encompasses roadway noise, aircraft noise, industrial noise as well as high-intensity sonar. Plastic pollution: involves the accumulation of plastic products and microplastics in the environment that adversely affects wildlife, wildlife habitat, or humans. Soil contamination
Soil contamination
occurs when chemicals are released by spill or underground leakage. Among the most significant soil contaminants are hydrocarbons, heavy metals, MTBE,[22] herbicides, pesticides and chlorinated hydrocarbons. Radioactive
Radioactive
contamination, resulting from 20th century activities in atomic physics, such as nuclear power generation and nuclear weapons research, manufacture and deployment. (See alpha emitters and actinides in the environment.) Thermal pollution, is a temperature change in natural water bodies caused by human influence, such as use of water as coolant in a power plant. Visual pollution, which can refer to the presence of overhead power lines, motorway billboards, scarred landforms (as from strip mining), open storage of trash, municipal solid waste or space debris. Water pollution, by the discharge of wastewater from commercial and industrial waste (intentionally or through spills) into surface waters; discharges of untreated domestic sewage, and chemical contaminants, such as chlorine, from treated sewage; release of waste and contaminants into surface runoff flowing to surface waters (including urban runoff and agricultural runoff, which may contain chemical fertilizers and pesticides; also including human feces from open defecation - still a major problem in many developing countries); groundwater pollution from waste disposal and leaching into the ground, including from pit latrines and septic tanks; eutrophication and littering.

Pollutants Main article: Pollutant A pollutant is a waste material that pollutes air, water, or soil. Three factors determine the severity of a pollutant: its chemical nature, the concentration and the persistence. Cost of pollution Pollution
Pollution
has a cost.[23][24][25] Manufacturing
Manufacturing
activities that cause air pollution impose health and clean-up costs on the whole of society, whereas the neighbors of an individual who chooses to fire-proof his home may benefit from a reduced risk of a fire spreading to their own homes. A manufacturing activity that causes air pollution is an example of a negative externality in production. A negative externality in production occurs “when a firm’s production reduces the well-being of others who are not compensated by the firm."[26] For example, if a laundry firm exists near a polluting steel manufacturing firm, there will be increased costs for the laundry firm because of the dirt and smoke produced by the steel manufacturing firm.[27] If external costs exist, such as those created by pollution, the manufacturer will choose to produce more of the product than would be produced if the manufacturer were required to pay all associated environmental costs. Because responsibility or consequence for self-directed action lies partly outside the self, an element of externalization is involved. If there are external benefits, such as in public safety, less of the good may be produced than would be the case if the producer were to receive payment for the external benefits to others. However, goods and services that involve negative externalities in production, such as those that produce pollution, tend to be over-produced and underpriced since the externality is not being priced into the market.[26] Pollution
Pollution
can also create costs for the firms producing the pollution. Sometimes firms choose, or are forced by regulation, to reduce the amount of pollution that they are producing. The associated costs of doing this are called abatement costs, or marginal abatement costs if measured by each additional unit.[28] In 2005 pollution abatement capital expenditures and operating costs in the US amounted to nearly $27 million.[29] Socially optimal level of pollution Society derives some indirect utility from pollution, otherwise there would be no incentive to pollute. This utility comes from the consumption of goods and services that create pollution. Therefore, it is important that policymakers attempt to balance these indirect benefits with the costs of pollution in order to achieve an efficient outcome.[30]

A visual comparison of the free market and socially optimal outcomes.

It is possible to use environmental economics to determine which level of pollution is deemed the social optimum. For economists, pollution is an “external cost and occurs only when one or more individuals suffer a loss of welfare,” however, there exists a socially optimal level of pollution at which welfare is maximized.[31] This is because consumers derive utility from the good or service manufactured, which will outweigh the social cost of pollution until a certain point. At this point the damage of one extra unit of pollution to society, the marginal cost of pollution, is exactly equal to the marginal benefit of consuming one more unit of the good or service.[32] In markets with pollution, or other negative externalities in production, the free market equilibrium will not account for the costs of pollution on society. If the social costs of pollution are higher than the private costs incurred by the firm, then the true supply curve will be higher. The point at which the social marginal cost and market demand intersect gives the socially optimal level of pollution. At this point, the quantity will be lower and the price will be higher in comparison to the free market equilibrium.[32] Therefore, the free market outcome could be considered a market failure because it “does not maximize efficiency”.[26] This model can be used as a basis to evaluate different methods of internalizing the externality. Some examples include tariffs, a carbon tax and cap and trade systems. Sources and causes

Play media

Air pollution
Air pollution
produced by ships may alter clouds, affecting global temperatures.

Air pollution
Air pollution
comes from both natural and human-made (anthropogenic) sources. However, globally human-made pollutants from combustion, construction, mining, agriculture and warfare are increasingly significant in the air pollution equation.[33] Motor vehicle emissions
Motor vehicle emissions
are one of the leading causes of air pollution.[34][35][36] China, United States, Russia, India[37] Mexico, and Japan are the world leaders in air pollution emissions. Principal stationary pollution sources include chemical plants, coal-fired power plants, oil refineries,[38] petrochemical plants, nuclear waste disposal activity, incinerators, large livestock farms (dairy cows, pigs, poultry, etc.), PVC factories, metals production factories, plastics factories, and other heavy industry. Agricultural air pollution comes from contemporary practices which include clear felling and burning of natural vegetation as well as spraying of pesticides and herbicides[39] About 400 million metric tons of hazardous wastes are generated each year.[40] The United States
United States
alone produces about 250 million metric tons.[41] Americans constitute less than 5% of the world's population, but produce roughly 25% of the world’s CO2,[42] and generate approximately 30% of world’s waste.[43][44] In 2007, China
China
has overtaken the United States
United States
as the world's biggest producer of CO2,[45] while still far behind based on per capita pollution - ranked 78th among the world's nations.[46]

An industrial area, with a power plant, south of Yangzhou's downtown, China

In February 2007, a report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), representing the work of 2,500 scientists, economists, and policymakers from more than 120 countries, said that humans have been the primary cause of global warming since 1950. Humans have ways to cut greenhouse gas emissions and avoid the consequences of global warming, a major climate report concluded. But to change the climate, the transition from fossil fuels like coal and oil needs to occur within decades, according to the final report this year from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).[47] Some of the more common soil contaminants are chlorinated hydrocarbons (CFH), heavy metals (such as chromium, cadmium–found in rechargeable batteries, and lead–found in lead paint, aviation fuel and still in some countries, gasoline), MTBE, zinc, arsenic and benzene. In 2001 a series of press reports culminating in a book called Fateful Harvest unveiled a widespread practice of recycling industrial byproducts into fertilizer, resulting in the contamination of the soil with various metals. Ordinary municipal landfills are the source of many chemical substances entering the soil environment (and often groundwater), emanating from the wide variety of refuse accepted, especially substances illegally discarded there, or from pre-1970 landfills that may have been subject to little control in the U.S. or EU. There have also been some unusual releases of polychlorinated dibenzodioxins, commonly called dioxins for simplicity, such as TCDD.[48] Pollution
Pollution
can also be the consequence of a natural disaster. For example, hurricanes often involve water contamination from sewage, and petrochemical spills from ruptured boats or automobiles. Larger scale and environmental damage is not uncommon when coastal oil rigs or refineries are involved. Some sources of pollution, such as nuclear power plants or oil tankers, can produce widespread and potentially hazardous releases when accidents occur. In the case of noise pollution the dominant source class is the motor vehicle, producing about ninety percent of all unwanted noise worldwide. Effects Human health Further information: Soil
Soil
pollution §  Health
Health
effects, Toxic hotspots, and List of pollution-related diseases

Overview of main health effects on humans from some common types of pollution.[49][50][51]

Adverse air quality can kill many organisms including humans. Ozone pollution can cause respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease, throat inflammation, chest pain, and congestion. Water pollution causes approximately 14,000 deaths per day, mostly due to contamination of drinking water by untreated sewage in developing countries. An estimated 500 million Indians have no access to a proper toilet,[52][53] Over ten million people in India
India
fell ill with waterborne illnesses in 2013, and 1,535 people died, most of them children.[54] Nearly 500 million Chinese lack access to safe drinking water.[55] A 2010 analysis estimated that 1.2 million people died prematurely each year in China
China
because of air pollution.[56] The WHO estimated in 2007 that air pollution causes half a million deaths per year in India.[57] Studies have estimated that the number of people killed annually in the United States
United States
could be over 50,000.[58] Oil spills can cause skin irritations and rashes. Noise pollution induces hearing loss, high blood pressure, stress, and sleep disturbance. Mercury has been linked to developmental deficits in children and neurologic symptoms. Older people are majorly exposed to diseases induced by air pollution. Those with heart or lung disorders are at additional risk. Children and infants are also at serious risk. Lead
Lead
and other heavy metals have been shown to cause neurological problems. Chemical and radioactive substances can cause cancer and as well as birth defects. An October 2017 study by the Lancet Commission on Pollution
Pollution
and Health found that global pollution, specifically toxic air, water, soils and workplaces, kill nine million people annually, which is triple the number of deaths caused by AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined, and 15 times higher than deaths caused by wars and other forms of human violence.[59] The study concluded that "pollution is one of the great existential challenges of the Anthropocene
Anthropocene
era. Pollution endangers the stability of the Earth’s support systems and threatens the continuing survival of human societies."[3] Environment Pollution
Pollution
has been found to be present widely in the environment. There are a number of effects of this:

Biomagnification
Biomagnification
describes situations where toxins (such as heavy metals) may pass through trophic levels, becoming exponentially more concentrated in the process. Carbon dioxide
Carbon dioxide
emissions cause ocean acidification, the ongoing decrease in the pH of the Earth's oceans as CO2 becomes dissolved. The emission of greenhouse gases leads to global warming which affects ecosystems in many ways. Invasive species
Invasive species
can out compete native species and reduce biodiversity. Invasive plants can contribute debris and biomolecules (allelopathy) that can alter soil and chemical compositions of an environment, often reducing native species competitiveness. Nitrogen oxides are removed from the air by rain and fertilise land which can change the species composition of ecosystems. Smog
Smog
and haze can reduce the amount of sunlight received by plants to carry out photosynthesis and leads to the production of tropospheric ozone which damages plants. Soil
Soil
can become infertile and unsuitable for plants. This will affect other organisms in the food web. Sulfur dioxide
Sulfur dioxide
and nitrogen oxides can cause acid rain which lowers the pH value of soil. Organic pollution of watercourses can deplete oxygen levels and reduce species diversity.

Environmental health
Environmental health
information The Toxicology
Toxicology
and Environmental Health
Health
Information Program (TEHIP)[60] at the United States National Library of Medicine
United States National Library of Medicine
(NLM) maintains a comprehensive toxicology and environmental health web site that includes access to resources produced by TEHIP and by other government agencies and organizations. This web site includes links to databases, bibliographies, tutorials, and other scientific and consumer-oriented resources. TEHIP also is responsible for the Toxicology
Toxicology
Data Network (TOXNET)[61] an integrated system of toxicology and environmental health databases that are available free of charge on the web. TOXMAP is a Geographic Information System (GIS) that is part of TOXNET. TOXMAP uses maps of the United States
United States
to help users visually explore data from the United States
United States
Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Toxics Release Inventory
Toxics Release Inventory
and Superfund Basic Research Programs. Worker productivity A number of studies show that pollution has an adverse effect on the productivity of both indoor and outdoor workers.[62][63][64] Regulation and monitoring Main article: Regulation and monitoring of pollution To protect the environment from the adverse effects of pollution, many nations worldwide have enacted legislation to regulate various types of pollution as well as to mitigate the adverse effects of pollution. Pollution
Pollution
control

A litter trap catches floating waste in the Yarra River, east-central Victoria, Australia

Air pollution
Air pollution
control system, known as a Thermal oxidizer, decomposes hazard gases from industrial air streams at a factory in the United States of America.

A dust collector in Pristina, Kosovo

Gas nozzle with vapor recovery

A Mobile Pollution
Pollution
Check Vehicle in India.

Pollution control
Pollution control
is a term used in environmental management. It means the control of emissions and effluents into air, water or soil. Without pollution control, the waste products from overconsumption, heating, agriculture, mining, manufacturing, transportation and other human activities, whether they accumulate or disperse, will degrade the environment. In the hierarchy of controls, pollution prevention and waste minimization are more desirable than pollution control. In the field of land development, low impact development is a similar technique for the prevention of urban runoff. Practices

Recycling Reusing Waste
Waste
minimisation Mitigating Preventing Compost

Pollution control
Pollution control
devices

Air pollution
Air pollution
control

Thermal oxidizer

Dust collection systems

Baghouses Cyclones Electrostatic precipitators

Scrubbers

Baffle spray scrubber Cyclonic spray scrubber Ejector venturi scrubber Mechanically aided scrubber Spray tower Wet scrubber

Sewage
Sewage
treatment

Sedimentation (Primary treatment) Activated sludge
Activated sludge
biotreaters (Secondary treatment; also used for industrial wastewater) Aerated lagoons Constructed wetlands
Constructed wetlands
(also used for urban runoff)

Industrial wastewater treatment

API oil-water separators[38][65] Biofilters Dissolved air flotation
Dissolved air flotation
(DAF) Powdered activated carbon treatment Ultrafiltration

Vapor recovery
Vapor recovery
systems Phytoremediation

Perspectives The earliest precursor of pollution generated by life forms would have been a natural function of their existence. The attendant consequences on viability and population levels fell within the sphere of natural selection. These would have included the demise of a population locally or ultimately, species extinction. Processes that were untenable would have resulted in a new balance brought about by changes and adaptations. At the extremes, for any form of life, consideration of pollution is superseded by that of survival. For humankind, the factor of technology is a distinguishing and critical consideration, both as an enabler and an additional source of byproducts. Short of survival, human concerns include the range from quality of life to health hazards. Since science holds experimental demonstration to be definitive, modern treatment of toxicity or environmental harm involves defining a level at which an effect is observable. Common examples of fields where practical measurement is crucial include automobile emissions control, industrial exposure (e.g. Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
(OSHA) PELs), toxicology (e.g. LD50), and medicine (e.g. medication and radiation doses). "The solution to pollution is dilution", is a dictum which summarizes a traditional approach to pollution management whereby sufficiently diluted pollution is not harmful.[66][67] It is well-suited to some other modern, locally scoped applications such as laboratory safety procedure and hazardous material release emergency management. But it assumes that the dilutant is in virtually unlimited supply for the application or that resulting dilutions are acceptable in all cases. Such simple treatment for environmental pollution on a wider scale might have had greater merit in earlier centuries when physical survival was often the highest imperative, human population and densities were lower, technologies were simpler and their byproducts more benign. But these are often no longer the case. Furthermore, advances have enabled measurement of concentrations not possible before. The use of statistical methods in evaluating outcomes has given currency to the principle of probable harm in cases where assessment is warranted but resorting to deterministic models is impractical or infeasible. In addition, consideration of the environment beyond direct impact on human beings has gained prominence. Yet in the absence of a superseding principle, this older approach predominates practices throughout the world. It is the basis by which to gauge concentrations of effluent for legal release, exceeding which penalties are assessed or restrictions applied. One such superseding principle is contained in modern hazardous waste laws in developed countries, as the process of diluting hazardous waste to make it non-hazardous is usually a regulated treatment process.[68] Migration from pollution dilution to elimination in many cases can be confronted by challenging economical and technological barriers. Greenhouse gases and global warming Main article: Global warming

Historical and projected CO2 emissions by country (as of 2005). Source: Energy
Energy
Information Administration.[69][70]

Carbon dioxide, while vital for photosynthesis, is sometimes referred to as pollution, because raised levels of the gas in the atmosphere are affecting the Earth's climate. Disruption of the environment can also highlight the connection between areas of pollution that would normally be classified separately, such as those of water and air. Recent studies have investigated the potential for long-term rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide to cause slight but critical increases in the acidity of ocean waters, and the possible effects of this on marine ecosystems. Most polluting industries The Pure Earth, an international non-for-profit organization dedicated to eliminating life-threatening pollution in the developing world, issues an annual list of some of the world's most polluting industries.[71]

Lead-Acid Battery Recycling Industrial Mining
Mining
and Ore Processing Lead
Lead
Smelting Tannery Operations Artisanal Small-Scale Gold Mining Industrial/Municipal Dumpsites Industrial Estates Chemical Manufacturing Product Manufacturing Dye Industry Globalisation

World’s worst polluted places The Pure Earth issues an annual list of some of the world's worst polluted places.[72]

Agbogbloshie, Ghana Chernobyl*, Ukraine Citarum River, Indonesia Dzershinsk*, Russia Hazaribagh, Bangladesh Kabwe*, Zambia Kalimantan, Indonesia Matanza Riachuelo, Argentina Niger River Delta, Nigeria Norilsk*, Russia

See also

Book: Pollution

Environmental health Environmental racism Marine pollution Pollutants Hazardous Substances Data Bank Regulation of greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act Biological contamination Chemical contamination Pollution
Pollution
haven hypothesis

Air pollution

Air dispersion modeling Arden Pope Atmospheric chemistry observational databases
Atmospheric chemistry observational databases
- links to freely available data. Climate change Emission standard Light pollution Greenhouse gas

Soil
Soil
contamination

Environmental soil science List of solid waste treatment technologies List of waste management companies List of waste management topics

Water pollution

Cruise ship pollution Marine debris Marine pollution Ship pollution Stormwater Wastewater Wastewater
Wastewater
quality indicators

Other

Contamination control Earth Day Externality Genetic pollution Global warming Heat pollution List of environmental issues Noise health effects Space debris radioactivity

References

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External links Media related to Pollution
Pollution
at Wikimedia Commons

Look up pollution in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

OEHHA proposition 65 list National Toxicology
Toxicology
Program – from USA National Institutes of Health. Reports and studies on how pollutants affect people TOXNET – NIH databases and reports on toxicology TOXMAP – Geographic Information System (GIS) that uses maps of the United States
United States
to help users visually explore data from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Toxics Release Inventory and Superfund Basic Research Programs EPA.gov – manages Superfund sites and the pollutants in them (CERCLA). Map the EPA Superfund Toxic Release Inventory – tracks how much waste USA companies release into the water and air. Gives permits for releasing specific quantities of these pollutants each year. Map EPA's Toxic Release Inventory Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry – Top 20 pollutants, how they affect people, what USA industries use them and the products in which they are found Toxicology
Toxicology
Tutorials from the National Library of Medicine
Medicine
– resources to review human toxicology. World's Worst Polluted Places 2007[permanent dead link], according to the Blacksmith Institute The World's Most Polluted Places at Time.com (a division of Time Magazine) Chelyabinsk: The Most Contaminated Spot on the Planet Documentary Film by Slawomir Grünberg (1996) Nieman Reports Tracking Toxics When the Data Are Polluted

v t e

Pollution

Air pollution

Acid rain Air quality
Air quality
index Atmospheric dispersion modeling Chlorofluorocarbon Indoor air quality Global dimming Global distillation Global warming Ozone
Ozone
depletion Atmospheric particulate matter Smog

Water pollution

Environmental impact of pharmaceuticals and personal care products Environmental impact of shipping Environmental monitoring Eutrophication Freshwater environmental quality parameters Groundwater pollution Hypoxia Marine debris Marine pollution Nutrient pollution Ocean acidification Oil spill Septic tank Surface runoff Thermal pollution Turbidity Urban runoff Wastewater Water quality Water stagnation Waterborne diseases

Soil
Soil
contamination

Bioremediation Electrical resistance heating Herbicide Open defecation Pesticide Phytoremediation Soil
Soil
Guideline Values (SGVs)

Radioactive
Radioactive
contamination

Actinides in the environment Bioremediation of radioactive waste Environmental radioactivity Fission product Nuclear fallout Plutonium in the environment Radiation poisoning Radium in the environment Uranium in the environment

Other types of pollution

Land degradation Light pollution Pollution
Pollution
from nanomaterials Noise pollution Radio spectrum pollution Urban heat island Visual pollution

Inter-government treaties

Basel Convention CLRTAP Kyoto Protocol MARPOL Convention Montreal
Montreal
Protocol OSPAR Rotterdam Convention Stockholm Convention

Major organizations

Basel Action Network Central Pollution Control Board
Central Pollution Control Board
(India) DEFRA Environment Agency
Environment Agency
(England and Wales) Scottish Environment Protection Agency U.S. EPA European Environment Agency Greenpeace

v t e

Environmental science

Main fields

Atmospheric sciences Biogeochemistry Ecology Environmental chemistry Geosciences Hydrology Limnology Oceanography Soil
Soil
science

Related fields

Biology Chemistry

green

Ecological economics Environmental design Environmental economics Environmental engineering Environmental health

epidemiology

Environmental studies Environmental toxicology Geodesy Physics Sustainability
Sustainability
science Systems ecology Urban ecology

Applications

Energy
Energy
conservation Environmental technology Natural resource management Pollution
Pollution
control Recycling Remediation Renewable energy Road ecology Sewage
Sewage
treatment Urban metabolism Water purification Waste
Waste
management

See also

Human impact on the environment Sustainability

Environment portal Category

scientists

Glossary Degrees Journals Research institutes

v t e

Global human population

Major topics

Biocapacity Optimum population Overpopulation

Malthusian catastrophe

Population Population
Population
ethics Population
Population
momentum Sustainable development Women's reproductive rights Zero population growth

Biological and related topics

Family planning

Pledge two or fewer

Human population planning

One-child policy Two-child policy

Population
Population
biology Population
Population
decline Population
Population
density

Physiological density

Population
Population
dynamics Population
Population
growth Population
Population
model Population
Population
pyramid Projections of population growth

Human impact on the environment

Deforestation Desalination Desertification Environmental impact

of agriculture of aviation of biodiesel of concrete of electricity generation of the energy industry of fishing of irrigation of mining of off-roading of oil shale industry of palm oil of paper of the petroleum industry of reservoirs of shipping of war

Industrialisation Land degradation Land reclamation Overconsumption Pollution Quarrying Urbanization

Loss of green belts Urban sprawl

Waste Water scarcity

Overdrafting

Population ecology

Carrying capacity Deep ecology Earth's energy budget Food security Habitat destruction I = P × A  × T Malthusian growth model Overshoot (population) World energy consumption World energy resources World3 model

Literature

A Modest Proposal Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind, Peopling of Countries, etc. An Essay on the Principle of Population "How Much Land Does a Man Need?" Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth Population
Population
Control: Real Costs, Illusory Benefits The Limits to Growth The Population
Population
Bomb The Skeptical Environmentalist The Ultimate Resource

Publications

Population
Population
and Environment Population
Population
and Development Review

Lists

Population
Population
and housing censuses by country Metropolitan areas by population Population
Population
milestone babies

Events and organizations

7 Billion Actions International Conference on Population
Population
and Development Population
Population
Action International Population
Population
Connection Population
Population
Matters Population
Population
Research Institute United Nations Population
Population
Fund Voluntary Human Extinction Movement World Population
Population
Day World Population
Population
Foundation

Related topics

Classic Maya collapse Fertility and intelligence Green Revolution Holocene extinction Migration

Commons Human overpopulation Human activities with impact on the environment Human migration

v t e

Lists of countries by population statistics

Global

Current population Current population (United Nations)

(Sub-)Continents

Africa Asia Europe North America

Caribbean

Oceania South America

Intercontinental

Americas Arab world Commonwealth of Nations Eurasia European Union Islands Latin America Middle East

Cities/urban regions

National capitals Cities proper Metropolitan areas Urban areas Megacities Megalopolises

Past and future

Past population (United Nations) Past and future population 1 1000 1500 1600 1700 1800 1900 1907 1939 1989 2000 2005 2010 Future population

Population
Population
density

Current density Current real density based on food growing capacity

Growth indicators

Population growth
Population growth
rate Natural increase Birth rate Mortality rate Fertility rate

Other demographics

Age at first marriage Divorce rate Ethnic and cultural diversity level Foreign-born population Immigrant population Linguistic diversity Median age Net migration rate Number of households Sex ratio Urban population Urbanization

Health

Antiviral medications for pandemic influenza HIV/AIDS adult prevalence rate Infant and under-five mortality rates Life expectancy Percentage suffering from undernourishment Health
Health
expenditure covered by government Suicide rate Total health expenditure per capita Body Mass Index (BMI)

Education and innovation

Bloomberg Innovation Index Education Index International Innovation Index Innovation Union Scoreboard Literacy rate Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies Progress in International Reading Literacy Study Student skills Tertiary education attainment Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study Women's average years in school World Intellectual Property Indicators

Economic

Development aid given

Official Development Assistance received

Employment rate Irrigated land area Human Development Index

by country inequality-adjusted

Human Poverty Index Imports Income equality Job security Labour force Number of millionaires (US dollars) Number of billionaires (US dollars) Percentage living in poverty Public sector Sen social welfare function Unemployment rate

List of international rankings List of top international rankings by country Lists by country

Authority control

GND: 4186812-2 NDL: 00566135

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