Environment Pollution and Impacts


HOUSTON: Introduction: Environmental pollution has existed for centuries but only started to be significant following the industrial revolution in the 19th century. Pollution occurs when the natural environment cannot destroy an element without creating harm or damages to itself. Environmental Pollution occurs when pollutants contaminate the surroundings; which brings about changes that affect our normal lifestyles adversely. Pollution disturbs our ecosystem and the balance in the environment. With modernization and development in our lives pollution has reached its peak; giving rise to global warming and human illness.

Effects of Environmental Pollution:
Environmental Pollution occurs in different forms; air, water, soil, radioactive, noise, heat/ thermal and light. Toxic environmental pollution affects more than 200 million people worldwide, according to Pure Earth, a non-profit environmental organization. In some of the world’s worst polluted places, babies are born with birth defects, children have lost 30 to 40 IQ points, and life expectancy may be as low as 45 years because of cancers and other diseases.

1.Humans: The effects of environmental pollution on humans are mainly physical but can also turn into neuro-affections in the long term. The decrease in quality of air leads to several respiratory problems including asthma or lung cancer. Chest pain, congestion, throat inflammation, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease is some of diseases that can be causes by air pollution. Water pollution occurs due to contamination of water and may pose skin related problems including skin irritations and rashes.

2.Animals: Environmental pollution mainly affects animals by causing harm to their living environment, making it toxic for them to live in. Acid rains can change the composition of rivers and seas, making them toxic for fishes; an important quantity of ozone in the lower parts of the atmospheres can cause lung problems to all animals. Eventually, soil pollution will cause harm and sometimes even the destruction of microorganisms, which can have dramatic effect of killing the first layers of the primary food chain.

3.Plants: As for animals, plants and especially trees, can be destroyed by acid rains, ozone in the lower atmosphere block the plant respiration, and harmful pollutants can absorbed form the water or soil. Constant use of pesticides, insecticides & other chemicals causes the soil to become infertile.

4. Ecosystem:  Almost all our gains in the fields of industrial progress, science and technology had so far been realized at the cost of our health. Even our flora and fauna were found to be threatened with extinction.

Conclusion: Everything on our planet is interconnected, we all depend on each other’s actions and the way we treat natural resources and we should care for it in the most appropriate manner. It is impossible that all the existing pollution problems in the environmental can completely be resolved in the next decade. It is the responsibility of everyone to protect our environment and fulfill our responsibilities in environmental protection, creating a quality ecological environment and sharing wonderful green living together.

By Dr. Ramamohana Reddy, Environmental Ecologist/Supervisor, CHEMTEX Environment Laboratories, Texas USA