Common Water Pollutants and their Effects

Common Water Pollutants and their Effects

In small quantities, these pollutants pose no threat to our health. But with rising levels of pollution today, the contamination has reached alarming levels. Below is a list of the common pollutants that can be found in water today.

Sewage: There are billions of people on the planet, generating massive amounts of waste. Improper disposal of sewage, often dumped untreated into water bodies is the major cause of water pollution today. Untreated sewage can affect the immediate environment around people and also lead to water-borne diseases like cholera and diarrhoea. Untreated sewage also contains considerable amounts of biodegradable organic compounds. This waste undergoes decomposition and consume the dissolved oxygen available in the water body and cause difficulties for aquatic life.

Synthetic Organic Compounds: Synthetic pesticides, fertilisers, detergents, pharmaceuticals are common examples of synthetic compounds polluting water. Most of these compounds are toxic and since they are resistant to degradation, they remain in the water for a long time. When consumed over long periods of time, these chemicals in water can be extremely harmful to the human body. They can cause chemical burns, nausea, convulsions and lead to chronic health disorders. Some of these compounds are carcinogenic as well.

Chemical Waste: Heavy metals such as lead, cadmium and mercury which are commonly used in batteries can sometimes find their way into water due to illegal dumping by factories. Another kind of chemical waste that is extremely dangerous to health and the ecosystem is radioactive waste. Factories that reprocess waste fuel from nuclear power plants usually discharge waste water into the sea and this is carried by ocean currents and pollutes other sources of water. However, radioactive waste is not a common pollutant.

Oil Pollution: Oil pollution does not refer only to huge oil spills and slicks that occur due to accidents in oceans or seas. Oil spills account for only 12 percent of the oil pollution that occurs in the world. The rest is caused due to oil finding its way into drains from food and other sources.

The above are most common pollutants to be found in water. These pollutants cannot be removed with traditional water purifying methods alone like boiling, etc. Water purifiers that come with the latest technology are necessary to purify water of these chemicals and impurities. This is why, it is important to invest in the right kind of water purifier, depending on the TDS levels of your water source. Eureka Forbes offers water purifiers that tackle both bacterial, as well as chemical impurities in water.