The term ‘pollution’ relates to the introduction of contaminants in the natural environment which produces negative changes. Pollution usually takes the form of chemical substances or energy, including light, heat and noise. The components of pollution are known as pollutants and are either foreign substances or naturally occurring contaminants. As well as this, pollution can be distinguished in point source pollution and nonpoint source pollution.
The major forms of pollution are air pollution, plastic pollution, littering, noise pollution, light pollution, radioactive contamination, soil contamination, visual pollution, thermal pollution and water pollution.
Pollution originated in prehistoric times when individuals discovered the fire. Then, with the industrial revolution, it became a major problem as chemical and wastes were thrown into the water.
Pollution has negative effects on human health, the environment and worker productivity. Therefore, many nations have enhanced legislation to reduce and mitigate the effects of contaminations.
In addition to pollution, the biggest environmental threats include the climate change, species extinction and biodiversity loss, water crisis, and natural resources drain.
Climate change is increasing the frequency of natural events such as wildfires, heat waves, tropical cyclones and hurricanes. In addition, it causes the disruption of food production, provoking famines.
Species extinction and biodiversity loss are caused by activities such as intensive agriculture and unsustainable fishing. This is due to the development of a consumer-based world where people are constantly demanding more.
The lack of water is a problem provoked by the temperatures rise and population growth. This issue has both social and economic consequences, leading to conflicts among individuals.
Finally, the lack of natural resources is an issue related to the growth of the population year after year, where individuals constantly require renewable goods.
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