What Impacts of Water Disposal does have on the Ecosystem and humans?
The disposal of wastes affects the environment in various ways. Depending on the type of waste, the impact can either be life threatening to the organisms within the disposal site or have no significant effect. Wastes that can decompose, such as the domestic wastes, may release unpleasant odor after some time due to the formation and release of gasses such as methane (Li, Park, & Zhu, 2011). As a result, people will avoid accessing such places. In addition, methane is a greenhouse gas meaning that if the disposal of such wastes occur in large proportions it can contribute to global warming.
Disposal through incineration may also have an adverse effect on the surrounding organisms. Burning plastic, for example, releases toxic substances such as dioxins (Daniel, 2012). Moreover, the gasses released due to incineration can pollute the air. Hence, inhaling the gasses can cause lung damage especially if the exposure to the air happens for a long time or if the waste being burned contain harmful substances. The ash from incinerators at times contain heavy metals or even toxic particles that may be difficult to notice. It is hence important to take care when near such disposal facilities.
Chemicals from disposed of wastes can also find their way to nearby water bodies. When such a thing happens, the chemical composition of the affected rivers or lakes will change. As a result, the ecosystems like fish habitats in the water will be affected. This may lead to the death of the organisms or those that lie above them in the food chain. Consumption of, for example, fish affected by mercury intoxication may affect people or organisms that eat them. Drinking of water from sources that contain chemicals that have been washed from dumping sites or landfills can also damage the health of people or animals that consume the water.
Waste disposal, if not proper can also lead to the spread of diseases. Vermin may be attracted to the disposal sites, and if infected can spread their diseases to other animals or human beings that may go to such areas (Guerrero, Maas, & Hogland, 2013). Moreover, wastes such as those from hospitals can lead to infection if not properly disposed of. This is because they may still contain microscopic pathogens.
Wastes disposal is done because of the need to prevent the destruction of the environment due to the accumulation of unnecessary products. Hospitals, for example, need to take the used syringes, cotton swabs or plastics with tissue samples away from the locations of the facilities so that the areas remain clean, thereby minimizing further infections (Chartier,2014). In addition, the wastes from households which include solid wastes from sewers are disposed to avoid making such places unattractive for human settlement.
Industrial wastes are disposed of so as to minimize the chances of intoxication. Some of the compounds that result from the manufacturing processes may be harmful to those who work within the plants hence the need to get rid of them (El Haggar, 2010). If this is not done, there are chances that the wastes may interfere with the production process or that manufacturing will stall. Hence, industrial wastes such as silver foils, mercury, and radioactive wastes need to be kept away from those who work within the plants.
The cause for electronic wastes disposal is majorly the need to create space for better versions. The rapid pace with which technological changes take place in the developed countries makes a lot of electronic products obsolete within a short period. As a result, they have to be replaced lest they fail to serve those who purchase them as they would want. These wastes , most of the time come from people's homes , or at times from the electronic manufacturing plants (Robinson, 2009). Cathode ray tube monitors, computer motherboards and plastic covers are examples of electronics wastes that may pollute the environment.
Waste can also be disposed of for the purpose of prevention of human injury. The non-biodegradable wastes such as glasses from industries or households need to be kept away from those who work or live in these places. Moreover, wastes from nuclear power plants are capable of causing cellular damage hence the need to dispose them before the exposure happens for a long time (Pires, Martinho, & Chang, 2011). Some wastes, especially the biodegradable refuse from homes are gotten rid of so as to prevent infecting people when they start to decompose. The wastes from hospitals such as syringes, or needles also can cause injury hence they are disposed after use or in the case of expiry.
Daniel, D. E. (Ed.). (2012). Geotechnical practice for waste disposal. Springer Science & Business Media.
El Haggar, S. (2010). Sustainable industrial design and waste management: cradle-to-cradle for sustainable development. Academic Press.
Guerrero, L. A., Maas, G., & Hogland, W. (2013). Solid waste management challenges for cities in developing countries. Waste management, 33(1), 220-232.
Li, Y., Park, S. Y., & Zhu, J. (2011). Solid-state anaerobic digestion for methane production from organic waste. Renewable and sustainable energy reviews, 15(1), 821-826.
Pires, A., Martinho, G., & Chang, N. B. (2011). Solid waste management in European countries: A review of systems analysis techniques. Journal of environmental management, 92(4), 1033-1050.
Robinson, B. H. (2009). E-waste: an assessment of global production and environmental impacts. Science of the total environment, 408(2), 183-191.
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