Friday, August 19, 2011

River pollution – Definition and meaning

River pollution is a form of water pollution which refers to the introduction of different chemicals and other pollutants such as sewage, food waste and farm effluents into rivers.

Rivers are among the most important sources of freshwater on our planet and this is one of the most important reasons why we have to address river pollution issue very seriously. Even now, there are many places in the world suffering from the water shortage issue, and in years to come things will be much more difficult because human population is set for massive growth in the next couple of decades.

Polluted rivers have extremely harmful effect on river ecosystems mostly because water pollution causes significant drop in oxygen levels, and many animals are not able to tolerate low levels of oxygen in rivers.

Polluted river can also become a source of disease and animals that drink this water can even pass this disease to people after people eat an infected animal. There have been several cases in Africa where people caught different waterborne diseases by drinking untreated polluted water directly from the river.

River pollution has become particularly serious issue in fast developing countries such as China and India. Ganges and Yangtze, for instance, are amongst world's most polluted rivers.

The easiest sign to spot water pollution is seeing dead fish floating on the river or noticing that the water has strange color or it smells bad.

Cleaning up dirty rivers requires lot of efforts and of course large funds, particularly in cases where large river water bodies are being polluted. As in many other cases it is wiser to prevent river pollution than cleaning it afterwards. Therefore make sure to do your part and don't be one of those people who deliberately throw rubbish into the river.