What do the human body and the planet earth have in common?
Water. If the human body has about two-thirds water, our planet has about 70% of it, which establishes the fact that water constituents a major portion in both body masses. And that is what's alarming. If 70% of the earth's surface is made up of water, then humankind should have been very wary of anything that would pollute this major portion of the planet. Alas, the human race has done otherwise. Water pollution is now a global problem.
Today, water pollution is rampant and the chief source of water pollution is the human race. We are the very ones that need water most and, yet, we have polluted it, even to the brink of extinction.
There are many types of water pollutants but these can be segregated into four classifications: natural, agricultural, municipal and industrial pollutants. Natural water pollutants could include all the natural phenomena that happen from time to time such as volcanic eruptions, earthquakes that cause major upheavals in the ocean floor and storms that cause flashfloods. Even global warming could be qualified as a cause of water pollution.
Agricultural pollution consists mainly of poultry and other agricultural animal wastes that are carelessly thrown off to bodies of water near farms. It could also be the fertilizers or pesticides that are used to make better crops, which erode into lakes, rivers or streams. Municipal wastes are those that come from residential areas. This is the liquid waste that households throw into bodies of water. Industrial pollution consists of all the wastes that major industrial firms chuck into the waters. This last classification is the most severe and most rampant among the three - and it is also the one that has caused the most damage. Industrial waste could include contaminants that are hard to take off from the waters once they spread - petroleum from oil spills or nuclear wastes.
The bodies of water in the world are in catastrophic danger, what with all the industries in the world today, plus our individual wastes all put together! No wonder mankind now drinks from bottles instead of just scooping water from running streams. The effects of water pollution to humanity is staggering. But we should also consider all the other life forms that suffer - the fishes and other animals such as birds, and plants. And what happens when humans eat the very fishes that live in polluted waters? Do you still want that answered?
But where there is life, there is hope. There is something that we can do - you can do - to save the only planet that we have. You could be an advocate, in your own simple way, of retrieving the lost beauty of oceans, lakes, rivers and streams. Here is a list that might get you to consider in fighting water pollution:
1. Primarily, you should prevent water pollution. Just like an illness, it is much simpler to prevent its occurrence rather than cure. Begin at your own home. Make sure that you conserve water. You can never imagine the water shortages that happen all over the globe. So if you have a constant supply of water at home, use it wisely.
2. Plant trees (if circumstance would allow you). Having more trees or plants in your yard would prevent pollutants from flowing freely into nearby bodies of water. Since they keep the soil from eroding, water pollution or at least, the quality of the water is improved.
3. Do not throw any form of garbage into any body of water. Sign up for any organization that aims at cleaning up beaches (or lakes, or streams). Be an active member of such organizations.
4. Never throw water pollutants down your sink or toilet bowl. Make sure to dispose wastewater properly. Think of the many septic tanks that contribute to water pollution. Now, 'get the picture?
Luckily, for all of us, there were concerned lawmakers out there that have made legislations on water pollution. The US alone has several anti-water pollution laws such as the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1972, The Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974, and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, which was amended in 1988. These laws prevent further damage to US waters.
Although water pollution is an extensive problem, bridling it is still possible. And everything begins with each and every individual in each and every home. And yes, that population includes YOU.