Research about the causes of water pollution

What human activities cause water pollution?

Causes of water pollution

Water is a necessary source for the livelihood of any living organism on the planet, as it is an integral part of the global ecosystem, and therefore any problem that may arise in the quality or quantity of water is a source of concern for the countries of the whole world,  and these problems refer to the term water pollution: which means changes in its natural properties and functions through the emission of chemical, bacterial, radiation or thermal energy in any aquatic ecosystem, whether it is under the surface of the earth, such as underground water, or on the surface of the earth, such as ocean water, Lakes, streams, rivers, and their estuaries,  and the causes of pollution can be classified into two main categories: - 

  • Bullets pollution: source is the pollution that occurs as a result of the mixing of harmful substances from the source directly with water molecules, such as pollutants that are emitted directly from the discharge pipe waste plant to the river water.
  • A non-point source of pollution: It results from mixing pollutants with water molecules indirectly, that is, due to environmental changes, or their transfer in some way to water molecules.

Industry, agriculture, exploration and mining operations in mines, wastewater, and the increase in population in the world are one of the most important reasons for the occurrence of water pollution problems in the world, and what follows is an explanation of these reasons and their effects on water systems.

Exploration and mining operations in mines

 Surface mining operations affect the lands, and lead to the formation of sediments and the flow of toxic chemicals, while the abandoned mines cause the release of toxic chemicals and heavy metals into streams and lakes, the quantities of minerals and salts increase, leading to health problems. It changes the pH of water, whether it is acidic, natural, or basic, in addition to that, it increases the turbidity of the water. 


Agricultural runoff, in addition to the pesticides and natural and chemical fertilizers that are used in the agriculture process, leads to many causes of water pollution, as it moves from agricultural fields to the waters of nearby rivers and streams, while it contains agricultural nutrients such as nitrates and phosphates, and leads to nitrogen precipitation. In the atmosphere resulting from the oxidation of nitrogen to the occurrence of one of the types of pollution known as water pollution with nutrients, and the increase of these agricultural nutrients leads to the excessive growth of aquatic plants and algae leads to many problems, as it leads to closing waterways and blocking light from deep waters, while the death of that huge number of aquatic plants and algae and their decomposition leads to the consumption of dissolved oxygen in the water. As a result, the numbers of marine organisms decrease due to the scarcity of oxygen affecting the Aquatic ecosystem.


The industry is one of the most important areas that any country aiming to develop and improve its economy cannot dispense with. However, at the same time, it poses a great danger to human civilization, as a result of the environmental pollution problems that result from it. The following points represent the effects of water pollution due to Industrial operations: - 

  • The pH of the water has changed.
  • Increase the number of nutrients in the water, which leads to what is called the process of erosion *.
  • They affect the water temperature by increasing or decreasing it, thus affecting the microorganisms that live in the water.
  • Excess minerals and salts in the water, which may lead to health problems.
  • Increasing the turbidity of the water, which may lead to blocking the gills of fish, preventing them from breathing, and making it difficult for plants to perform photosynthesis; Due to the difficulty in reaching sunlight, in addition to the increase in diseases caused by viruses and bacteria transmitted through soil particles.
  • Affects the natural color of the water.


Wastewater or sewage water is defined as the water resulting from the daily use of water in our homes, and from agricultural, industrial and commercial activities, in addition to rainwater runoff that included all road salts, oils, greases, chemicals present, and others during its run. Treating no more than 20% of wastewater around the world, and this percentage may be less in some less developed countries, while the rest of it flows into the environment without any treatment or utilization. Nevertheless, wastewater treatment processes Are very important; To provide clean water and adequate sanitary conditions to billions of people around the world. The process of wastewater treatment in developed countries takes place through the following steps: 

  • First: The sewage water is transported from homes through sewage pipes in a fast and healthy manner.
  • Second: The wastewater is treated in special plants, and then the resulting waste is disposed into the sea.

Wastewater is generally considered to be degradable or biodegradable, as most of it decomposes in the environment, but its mixing with chemicals and drugs may prevent this, and untreated wastewater in some areas may harm the environment and pollute it, in addition to that it causes many diseases. Health problems, such as diarrhea, are a result of the viruses and bacteria you may carry.

Population rise

The population of the world increases by millions every year, and human consumption increases steadily. This problem is considered one of the problems of concern in the world, as it is one of the most important causes of severe water pollution, and the process of  urbanization - meaning People moving from villages to cities as a result of population increase - another cause of many pollution factors, the following points will be mentioned:

  • The occurrence of physical disturbances to the lands as a result of the construction of many houses, factories, and roads on them.
  • Factories and mines lead to chemical pollution.
  • Unqualified or inappropriate collection and treatment of wastewater.
  • Increased use of agricultural fertilizers; To obtain more food, it leads to an increase in nutrients (nitrates and phosphates) in the water, which leads to plant growth such as algae. When they decompose and die, the bacteria use oxygen in the water, which leads to a decrease in oxygen levels and the deterioration of other water life that needs oxygen to survive.

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