What is Water Pollution?
Water pollution happens when a body of water such as a sea, lake or river becomes contaminated and that contamination negatively affects the water’s ecosystem, degrading water quality. Water pollution is usually a result of human action, including incorrect disposal of trade effluent.
Water pollution can occur in still, slow or fast-moving water. It can also occur in surface and groundwater and is a significant contributor to environmental damage.
At Metro Rod, we’re here to help businesses ensure they dispose of trade waste correctly, from trade effluent to washing down equipment. Our asset mapping service and pre-planned maintenance services can help you control and manage your water pollution and also ensure that you meet your environmental obligations.
What Are the Main Causes of Water Pollution?
Water Pollution is caused by a body of water becoming contaminated with a pollutant. Pollutants come in many varieties, such as untreated wastewater, oil, trade effluent and pesticides. Pollutants are known to be toxic and harmful to the environment, often causing environmental pH changes, heat changes and changes in salt levels.
The causes of these pollutants entering a body of water are usually a result of human and business activity, such as;
- Incorrect disposal of trade effluent
- Oil spills
- Chemical spills
- Fertilizer/pesticide run-off
- Waste dumping – chemical and industrial
- Incorrect sewage disposal
- Rapid urban development
- Ship pollution
Does your business know where its trade effluent and wastewater discharge to? An asset map is an essential tool which can map the drainage layout. Giving you vital information for your business’ pollution prevention and flood prevention plans.
An asset map, along with regular pre-planned maintenance, can keep your site in optimal working order preventing any downtime and emergency call-outs and saving you money.
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What Are the Effects of Water Pollution?
Water Pollution can have many untold effects on the ecosystem around a body of water. Water-borne disease is one of the largest effects of water pollution. The World Health Organisation estimates that two billion people don’t have access to clean drinking water and are forced to expose themselves to cholera, hepatitis A and dysentery because of water pollution.
Water pollution also has a negative effect on both plant and animal life by depleting oxygen and increasing the turbidity or cloudiness of the water. This blocks important light, disrupting plant growth, blocking the gills of some fish species and damaging phytoplankton, which are one of the main producers of oxygen and removers of CO2 from the atmosphere.
Finally, water pollution can directly affect humans by introducing toxins into the food chain. This introduction of toxins is usually a result of fishing in polluted waters or waste water being used in farming livestock and other agriculture.
Once pollutants have entered the watercourse, it’s near impossible to remove them, so it’s vital for businesses to take action and do everything they can to control trade effluent.
How Can Businesses Prevent Water Pollution?
Whether disposing of trade effluent or ensuring surface water isn’t contaminated, prevention is the best solution for businesses. Taking steps now to get the right tools in place reduces the risk of non-compliance and potential fines or imprisonment.
For advice on how Metro Rod can help, contact your local office.