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									                                    Save The Earth

Name: ___________________________                                           Class: ____________
Date: __________________________

In this Lesson:

In this lesson, you will learn more about the following:
    1) Introduction – What is Pollution about
    2) Types of Pollution – Learn the different types of Pollution
    3) Air Pollution
            A) Major Pollutants – What is polluting our air
            B) Impacts – What impact air pollution will have
    4) Water pollution
            A) Causes of Water pollution
            B) Impact
            C) Major pollutants
    5) Land pollution
            A) Causes of Land pollution
            B) Impact
            C) Prevention
    6) Noise Pollution
            A) Source of noise pollution
            B) Impact



Pollution is the issue of “dirtying” the environment in several ways such as illegally
disposing waste or the cutting trees excessively. There are certain forms of pollution,
namely, noise pollution, water pollution, air pollution, light pollution, visual pollution,
thermal pollution, soil contamination and radioactive contamination.

This pollution usually has a negative effect on mankind’s health and his environment.

                                    Types of Pollution:

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                                 Save The Earth

   1. Noise Pollution
          • This kind of pollution is excessive amount of noise produced by
             something or someone. This usually affects or harms our hearing, thus,
             making it noise pollution.
   2. Air Pollution

           • Air pollution is caused by objects that let out harmful gases and
             emissions such as carbon monoxide and CFC (Chlorofluorocarbons)
             into the air, which will harm mankind and the Earth.

   3. Water Pollution

           •        It is the contamination of water bodies by toxic/oil spills, littering or
               other harmful activities. It not only affects us, but it also affects marine
               life, and endangering their habitat.

   4. Land Pollution

           • It happens when harmful substances such as acid rain and pesticides
             seep into the soil and contaminates it. This can affect plants’ growth
             rate and the soil’s fertility negatively. Other problems include too
             much garbage, landfills and other toxic spillage.

   5. Visual Pollution

           • It is basically the presence of too many unnecessary objects above
             ground which obstructs our vision. These objects may include
             overhead power lines, too many road signs, thrash, etc.

   6. Thermal Pollution

           • It involves the temperature of various water bodies being subjected to
             change that is caused by humans. This includes the use of water as a
             coolant in power plants.

   7.   Light Pollution

        • It is basically too much light energy in a particular area, which either
        affects a person’s health or intrudes in a usually dim-lit area. This may
        interfere with star-gazing or astronomical observatories.

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                                    Save The Earth

    8. Radioactive Contamination

             • It is the spillage of radioactive substances that may occur when
               radioactive molecules are spilled from an object which uses nuclear
               energy, such as nuclear power plants or medicine.


                                       Air Pollution:

For air pollution, in order to reduce the current emission of greenhouse gases,
factories and power plants have been equipped so as to meet the current air emission
standard stated in the Environmental Pollution Control (Air Impurities) Regulations
2000. The industries are not allowed to use fuel that contains more than 1% of sulphur
content in order to reduce air pollution. All types of substances which may contribute
to air pollution are also reduced and discouraged, if not banned. CFC
(Chlorofluorocarbons) products have also been discouraged to prevent the releasing of
CFCs (Chlorofluorocarbons) into the air, which will deplete the ozone layer.

In short,

    1. Try not to use CFC (Chlorofluorocarbons) products
    2. Do not contribute to air pollution by burning objects openly
    3. Try to take public transport instead of private cars to reduce the pollution
       generated by the car.
    4. Conserve electricity so that the power plants would not have to burn so much
       coal to generate electricity.

                             Major Pollutants of the air:

    1. Carbon Monoxide (CO) ----- It is produced when the burning of fuel such as
       wood and petrol does not burn fully. It is colourless and odorless. Slows our
       movement and makes us drowsy,

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                                Save The Earth

   2. Carbon Dioxide (CO2) ----- The main greenhouse gas, it is produced via car or
      industrial emissions. Traps heat and causes the greenhouse effect.

   3. Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) ----- Produced from aerosols, air-conditioning
      systems, etc. It harms the ozone layer, the layer which protects the Earth from
      Ultraviolet (UV) rays, by depleting it, creating holes in it.

   4. Lead ----- It is harmful to the body, may cause some illnesses, nervous and
      digestive system problems and in some cases, cancer. It is especially harmful
      to children.

   5. Ozone ----- This gas is useful as in the stratosphere, it can shield us from UV
      rays, but at ground level, it is very poisonous and can cause itch and lower our
      immune systems towards some sickness.

   6. Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) ----- Produced via manufacturing industries and power
      plants. It creates acid rains and smog.
   7. Suspended Particulate Matter ----- It is actually dust, smoke in the air too
      small to be seen. When breathed in, it can damage our lungs and respiratory

   8. Sulphur Dioxide (SO2) ----- Another main contributor to smog and acid rain,
      it is formed from certain processes such as the production of paper or the
      smelting or metal. This gas again may affect our health negatively.

                           Impacts of Air Pollution:

1. Acid rain ----- Harms the soil due to the high acidity.

2. Smog / Haze -----Causes asthmatic people to have a higher chance of getting an
   attack, also causes respiratory problem.

3. Eutrophication ----- It is the process in which it encourages the growth of algae,
   which then affects aquatic plant life by using up oxygen and blocking sunlight
   from entering the water.
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                                    Save The Earth

4. Accumulation ----- It is the process in which nitrogen enters our drinking water
   sources and contaminates it. The nitrogen then undergoes a chemical reaction with
   other substances which become harmful to our health.

5. Illnesses ----- Certain illness such as lung cancer and the cirrhosis of the lung both
   are terminal illnesses and are life-threatening.


                                    Water Pollution:

For Singapore, the Public Utilities Board (PUB) is monitoring the pH levels of the
water inside and around Singapore. The public sewage system is also built into every
district, area and house in Singapore in order to effectively manage the waste water
generated. The waste water is then treated according to specified rules and regulations.
Companies, such as Hyflux Ltd also manages wastewater too.

Littering is also another form of water pollution. It not only dirties the water and
makes the place unsightly, also endangers the marine life and their habitats too. Oil
spills are also another problem which will create water pollution. Illegal waste
dumping is also another form of water pollution. Pesticides which may enter the water
may also pollute it.

Water Conservation:

    1.   Do not play with water.
    2.   Reuse the water used to wash the rice to water the plants
    3.   Replace the shower heads in the bathroom to water saving ones.
    4.   Avoid using hoses to wash the car, instead, use a wet cloth to wipe the car

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                                Save The Earth

                            Pollutants of the Water:

The pollutants of the water can be classified into 2 categories, organic and inorganic.
Each has their own way of polluting the water.


   1.   Bacterial
   2.   Tree and Bush debris
   3.   Insecticides and Herbicides
   4.   Pathogens
   5.   Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)


           1. Waste from Human Activities, like sediments from construction sites
              or chemical wastes.
           2. Acidity / Alkaline from Human Activities
           3. Fertilizers
           4. Litter / Thrash thrown into water bodies.

                          Causes of Water Pollution:

These are some general ways water pollution happens:

   1. Littering ----- Caused by humans when they litter, the litter makes the place
      unsightly and may cause food poisoning for animals.
   2. Illegal dumping of waste material ----- Happens when industries or
      manufacturing factories dump their wastes into the water without treatment.
   3. Insecticides/ Herbicides/ Fertilisers leaking into ground water ----- Excessive
      use of such chemicals may lead to the leakage of such chemicals into the
      ground water.
   4. Soil Erosion ----- When soil erosion happens, soil and sediments get dragged
      into the water and thus, make it muddy; water pollution.
   5. Oil Spills ----- When oil tankers leaks, the oil on the tanker get spilled into the
      water. Since oil does not dissolve in water, it remains ON water for a very
      long time. The oil not only affects marine life, it also affects birds such as sea

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                                    Save The Earth

       gulls which frequently get fish for food. The oil then sticks to their feathers
       and prevents them from flying.
    6. Disasters ----- Disasters such as floods and tornados can affect water too as
       they drag debris into the water. The debris then traps animals or enters their
       stomach, which may kill them and MAY endanger them.

Impacts of Water Pollution:

    1. It may lead to food poisoning due to the food chain; fish/plants being affected
       being consumed by us humans. (bioaccumulation)
    2. Makes water bodies unsuitable for drinking due to chemical contamination
    3. Kills marine life and destroys their habitat by either littering or again,
       chemical contamination
    4. Leads to the production of new, even more poisonous chemicals. This is due
       to the chemicals that are dumped by humans into the water goes through
       reactions such as decay. Then these chemicals react with each other to form
       even more harmful chemicals.


Land Pollution:

Soil can also be contaminated by pesticides, hazardous chemicals being spilled onto it
or other wastes buried beneath it. However, it can also be treated.

In the U.S, the pesticides used by citizens must be registered with the Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA). In Singapore, only approved “termiticides” may be used in
soil treatment against termites. If soil contamination is not controlled, it will affect the
soil chemistry even at the smallest amount of hazardous substances. That will affect
plant life which will eventually affect us humans.

Land pollution can also be caused by illegally disposing toxic waste which will harm
the soil. It can also be caused by having too much garbage, which will eventually lead
to more landfills. These “harmful objects” contain substances which may seep into the
ground and contaminate the
soil or pollute the ground water, which may subsequently harm our health.


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                                    Save The Earth

In order to prevent land pollution, we should:

    1.   Use only registered pesticides or termiticides
    2.   Do not spill hazardous chemicals or substances onto the soil.
    3.   Do not illegally bury hazardous waste beneath the soil.
    4.   Reduce the waste produced by us.
    5.   Do not litter.

Causes of Land Pollution:

         1. Littering ----- Caused by humans not disposing their garbage properly.
            Makes the place unsightly.
         2. Chemical Spills ----- When chemicals from a factory accidentally spills,
            the soil’s pH will change, affecting the growth of some plants.
         3. Excessive use of insecticides/herbicides/fungicides/pesticides ----- It again,
            may change the pH of the soil, affecting plant growth again.
         4. Illegal waste dumping by industrial/manufacturing factories. ----- It may
            lead to water pollution or affect the soil’s pH, affecting plant growth.

Impacts of land Pollution:

    1. Makes place unsightly ----- This is more of a person’s opinion but it indeed
       makes a place unsightly when litter is everywhere on the floor.
    2. Affects the tourism industry greatly ----- When tourists look at the condition of
       the country, they may not like it and thus, may not come to this country for
       holidays, in the process, affecting the tourism industry negatively.
    3. Reduces the level of the living conditions in a country. ----- Littering and other
       harmful substances may affect the living conditions of a country. Littering is a
    4. More pests such as rats and cockroaches. ----- More thrash and garbage equals
       to more pests. This is bad towards the living condition of the area.
    5. Affects plant growth ----- Chemical spills will affect the pH level of the soil.
       Different plants need different pH levels to grow properly. If the pH level of
       the soil changes drastically, the plant would not be able to grow properly,
       causing to die. In the worst case scenario, it may lead to the plant being


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                                Save The Earth

Noise Pollution:

Noise pollution is any unwanted noise that is produced in a large amount. This
includes the barking of dogs, the construction noise, noise produced by transport
vehicles, etc. Some countries such as Singapore does not allow any construction work
done during the weekends and weekdays after 6.00 p.m.* Noise pollution may not be
as harmful as other kinds of pollution, but it may be harmful to some people who has
certain kinds of disorder. To others, it may just be annoyances; even so this may
affect our health too.

   1. Spare a thought for other people and do not make any extra noise
   2. Tell the person politely to stop.

Sources of Noise Pollution:
   1. Construction Sites
   2. Highways
   3. Commercial Districts
   4. Airplanes
   5. Traffic Jams
   6. Industrial Districts

Impacts of Noise Pollution:

   1. Causes hearing-related diseases ----- Once the noise is too loud, it will then
      affect the hearing of a person and may eventually cause hearing-impair.
   2. Causes major annoyances ----- The loud noises may obstruct or disturb a
      person’s activities, such as giving important instructions, etc.
   3. May cause heart-related diseases ----- If a person is exposed to high level of
      noise for a too long period of time, their blood pressure will rise and may
      cause heart-related health problems.

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