5 Types of Environmental Pollution, What Are They?

Types of Pollution – Does Sinaumed’s realize that as time progresses, the natural environment becomes dirty? The meaning of the word “dirty” is that nowadays there is a lot of pollution going on in the environment which of course is a major problem in every country, not only in Indonesia.

Yep, this environmental pollution is influenced by the amount of productivity that occurs on planet earth. Many humans as social objects are not aware of the dangers of this pollution. The most felt danger from pollution is that human health is also disrupted.

Then, what are the kinds of pollution? Is it just air pollution, mostly from vehicle and factory exhaust fumes?

Of course not, there is a lot of pollution that has occurred on planet Earth that we are the culprits without even realizing it. So, for that reason, let’s take a closer look at the various types of pollution that have occurred on planet Earth as well as how to deal with them.

Understanding What is Environmental Pollution

Before discussing the various types of pollution, it is better if Sinaumed’s first understands what pollution is, especially environmental pollution.

Environmental pollution has now become a major problem experienced by many countries, not only in Indonesia. This happens in line with population growth that is too fast so that the need for natural resources including water, air and land is also “touched”.

In general, pollution is the process of entering certain materials or energy into an environment which actually causes negative changes to the environment, human health, to the existence of humans and other organizations. In this case, the environment in question relates to air ecosystems, soil ecosystems, marine ecosystems, and others.

Meanwhile, according to Law Number 32 of 2009 concerning Environmental Protection and Management, especially in Article 1 paragraph 14, it reveals that environmental pollution is “Entry or inclusion of living things, substances, energy, and/or other components into the environment by human activities so that they exceed the established environmental quality standards .

This environmental pollution can occur anywhere, along with the rapid rate of population growth. The heaviest pollution load is caused by industrial waste and various chemicals.

5 Kinds of Environmental Pollution

When viewed from its nature, environmental pollution that occurs in most countries including Indonesia, can be grouped into 5 types, namely air pollution, sound pollution, water pollution, soil pollution, and radiation pollution. Well, here is the explanation.

1. Air Pollution

Air pollution is when foreign materials enter through the air and then affect its quality in a certain area. Meanwhile, according to the Decree of the Minister of State for Population and Environment No. KEP – 03 / MENKLH / II / 1991 also reveals that air pollution is the entry or inclusion of living things, substances, energy, and or other components into the air by human activities or natural processes, so that the air quality drops to a certain level which causes the air to become less or no longer able to function according to its designation.

Classification of Air Pollutants

In general, air pollution or air pollution can be caused by two types of pollutants, namely those that are primary and secondary.

  • Primary Pollutants

Namely the type of pollutant which is the direct result of a process or pollutant substance that is generated directly by the source of the pollutant. Examples of primary pollutants are sulfur dioxide produced by factories and carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide from combustion

  • Secondary Pollutants

Namely the type of pollutant produced by the interaction of several primary pollutants in the atmosphere, such as photochemical reactions. An example of this secondary pollutant is the dissociation of NO2 which produces NO and O.

Causes of Air Pollution

  • Traffic

The use of transportation is actually the main cause of air pollution, especially in cars and motorbikes. Especially in this day and age, the number of vehicles is actually increasing every year until it finally causes traffic jams.

In theory, the petroleum used as a fuel contains hydrocarbon compounds and is then burned to produce carbon dioxide and water compounds.

However, in reality, engines cannot burn hydrocarbons cleanly, which causes vehicle exhausts to release harmful substances which cause more severe air pollution. The results of this incomplete combustion produce carbon monoxide (CO) which is a toxic gas, nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds (VOC).

These substances are dangerous causes of air pollution so that the air becomes hazy brown, blue or black and forms ozone. This ozone is very dangerous for health because it can seriously interfere with breathing and in the long term can cause a variety of more acute diseases.

  • Industrial or Factory Smoke
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The second main cause of air pollution is the increasing amount of industrial or factory smoke found in various regions. In the factory industry, there is usually a chimney that functions to blow out the remaining smoke every day.

However, several manufacturing industries produce very dangerous pollutants, especially the manufacturing industry for plastics, cement, aluminum, steel, and other chemical industries. Organic compounds such as carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons are pollutants that are commonly produced by the manufacturing industry, thus indirectly accelerating the process of the greenhouse effect phenomenon.

  • Use of Insecticides and Pesticides

In this day and age, in order for agricultural crops to grow well and healthily, it is necessary to apply fertilizers and anti-pest drugs such as insecticides and pesticides. However, the use of these materials actually has a negative impact on the environment.

Pesticides contain ammonia or NH3 which is certainly harmful to the atmosphere. Ammonia is a substance that can cause air pollution as well as water pollution and of course it is not good for health because it can cause bronchitis.

2. Sound Pollution (Noise)

Air or noise pollution is when noise occurs in an environment that exceeds a predetermined threshold value for that environment. The effect of noise on human health is determined by the level (loudness), distance, and intensity of the noise from the source.

Noise pollution can be caused by high volume sounds that make the surrounding area noisy and unpleasant. The noise level occurs when the sound intensity exceeds 70 decibels (dB).

 Causes of Noise Pollution

  • The sound of using machines, be it chainsaws, tile cutters, lawn mowers, and others.
  • The sound of pets.
  • Television sound at high volume.
  • Development project.
  • Vehicle horn sound.
  • The sound of machines in the factory, from the use of large fans, compressors, transformers and pumps.

When measured based on decibel power (dB), the sounds that often cause noise pollution are:

  • People are noisy or arguing = 80 dB
  • Train noise = 95 dB
  • Motor engine = 104 dB
  • Lightning sound = 120 dB
  • Airplane taking off = 150 dB

The most felt impact of this noise pollution is usually a feeling of discomfort, lack of concentration, difficulty sleeping, to the worst, it can cause temporary deafness.

3. Soil Pollution

Namely when a foreign object is added to an area of ​​land and causes the quality of the soil in that area to decrease to the point where it can endanger living things that use the land. This pollution usually occurs due to leakage of liquid waste or industrial chemicals.

Types of materials that can cause soil pollution are chemicals, microorganisms, and radioactive materials. All of these materials, if they enter the water, will also contaminate the soil.

Components of Materials Causing Soil Pollution

Soil pollution is most commonly caused by waste, especially from residential areas and trading places such as markets. In this case, the following is a description of the components of the materials that cause soil pollution.

  • Domestic waste

Domestic waste mostly comes from residential areas, trading places such as markets, restaurant businesses, and others; in the form of solid or liquid waste.

  • Solid waste

This solid waste is in the form of inorganic compounds that cannot be destroyed or broken down by microorganisms, such as plastic, ceramics, cans, and used building materials. For these inorganic compounds can remain intact for up to 300 years to come.

This inorganic waste can cause the soil layer to be impenetrable by plant roots, so that the soil will also not get water, especially minerals, whose function is to fertilize the soil.

  • Liquid waste

The liquid waste can be in the form of detergent, feces, oil or paint, which if allowed to seep into the soil will actually damage the soil water content as well as kill the microorganisms in the soil. This liquid waste usually comes from the processing of a production process, especially in the metal processing industry and other chemical industries, examples of substances are copper, lead, silver, chromium, arsenic and boron.

  • Industrial waste

Industrial waste can also be in the form of solid to liquid, which is usually produced by the factory industry, for example sludge and slurry originating from processing. The factory industries that contribute the most industrial waste are sugar factories, paper factories, fruit preservation places, fish and meat selling places, and others.

  • Agricultural Waste

Agricultural waste also contributes to soil contamination, especially with the use of urea and pesticides which are usually used to eradicate plant pests. The use of this fertilizer if done continuously can damage the soil structure, causing soil fertility to decrease and then it becomes unplantable by certain types of plants, because soil nutrients are decreasing.

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Impact of Soil Pollution

  • Impact On Health

Since the soil is a place where plants can live, if the soil is polluted, the plants planted will also be polluted. Especially if these plants are consumed by humans, then of course it will have an impact on health. Especially lead which is very dangerous for children, because it causes brain damage and kidney damage.

  • Impact on the Ecosystem

Soil pollution also has an impact on the ecosystem. Considering that the ecosystem has a pyramid-like shape, the chemical effects resulting from soil contamination will affect the lowest forms of life. Animals that are at the bottom of the pyramid will eat food containing foreign chemicals which will gradually concentrate on the creatures that inhabit the upper pyramid.

4. Water Pollution

Namely the entry of foreign objects into a water area and reduce the quality of water in the water area. Disturbed water quality is characterized by changes in smell, taste and color. This pollution problem has become a global problem that can kill hundreds of people in a short time. An example is in India, it is estimated that around 700 million people in India do not have access to a toilet, and 1,000 Indian children die from diarrheal diseases every day.

Causes of Water Pollution

Actually, water pollution can be caused by two factors, namely natural factors and human activity factors. For natural factors, it is usually related to natural disasters such as volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, and floods.

  • Volcanic eruptions

Lava released by volcanoes is usually in the form of a mixture of rocks, sand and gravel due to the flow of water that occurs on the slopes of the mountain. From the lava, it will “join” into the water flow, where the water flow is used by residents, especially refugee victims, to meet their needs. If the water enters the human body, of course it will be dangerous.

  • Flood

Flood disaster is a natural disaster that occurs almost every rainy season in several regions in Indonesia. Water pollution caused by flooding, especially when the river cannot accommodate water capacity due to heavy rainfall and then the water overflows into the surrounding land and is polluted by garbage.

  • Household waste

Especially in liquid household waste which contributes to the cause of water pollution. From the liquid household waste, various organic materials can be found (eg leftover vegetables, fish, rice, oil, fat, human waste water) which are carried away by sewage/ditch water, then follow the flow of the river.

Not only that, there are even inorganic materials such as plastic, aluminum, and bottles that are washed away by the currents of the water. Garbage piles up, clogs waterways and causes flooding. Other pollutant materials from household waste are biological contaminants in the form of disease germs, bacteria and fungi.

In urban areas, sewage water tends to be black in color and emits a pungent odor. In such sewage water, there are no living organisms except bacteria and fungi. Compared to industrial waste, household waste in urban areas in Indonesia accounts for 60% of all existing waste.

  • Catching Fish Using Poison

Until now, there are still many residents and fishermen who use tuba or potash (poison) to catch fish. This poison can kill not only adult fish, but also small fish. Fishing activities in this way result in pollution in the aquatic environment and degrade aquatic resources

5. Radiation Pollution

Namely the inclusion of radioactive materials that have radiation strength beyond a predetermined threshold value. Not only that, radiation pollution can also be caused by heat radiation that exceeds the normal temperature in an environment.

Usually, this radiation pollution is caused by radioactive dust resulting from the explosion of atomic reactors and atomic bombs.

So, that’s a review of the various types of pollution that occur on planet Earth and become a global problem experienced by many countries, not only in Indonesia. As the future generation, we must take early prevention so that these pollutions do not become more widespread and instead affect our children and grandchildren in the future.

Also Read!

  • Understanding the 5 Causes of Water Pollution
  • Negative Impacts of Air Pollution & Solutions
  • What is Soil Pollution?
  • Causes of Water Pollution and How to Overcome It
  • Air Pollution Factor
  • Definition of Environmental Pollution
  • Factors Causing Soil Pollution
  • Causes of Air Pollution and Solutions
  • Why Sea Water Tastes Salty
  • Definition of Breeding and Its Utilization
  • Definition of Reforestation
  • Know the Characteristics of Clean Water According to WHO
  • Causes & Impacts of Forest Fires