“Soil pollution” refers to the presence in the soil of a chemical or substance out The main anthropogenic sources of soil pollution are the chemicals used in or. PDF | World Soil Day was established in by the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) to celebrate the importance of soil and its vital. The user has requested enhancement of the downloaded file. All in-text references . contribute towards causing soil pollution. Chemicals like.
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PDF | On Jan 1, , Bijay Singh and others published Soil Soil pollution and its control. formations leading to the production of nitrate. and chemical processes assist in the formation of the soil, Adsorption: on the surface of soil colloids (clay and humus) many pollutants are bound;. • Filtering. Mark Hodson, Soil pollution and its impact on soil life. 2. Structure. • Sources of soil pollution. • How wide spread is the problem? • When is a pollutant a problem.
This is also necessary for the calculations of some of complex indices, e. Table S2 presents an interpretation of the PI values.
Enrichment factor EF EF is a measure of the possible impact of anthropogenic activity on the concentration of heavy metals in soil. To identify the expected impact of anthropogenesis on the heavy metal concentrations in the soil, the content of heavy metals characterized by low variability of occurrence LV is used as a reference, both in the analyzed samples and in GB.
If the value of EF ranges from 0.
However, if the value of EF exceeds 1. Contamination factor C f , The assessment of soil contamination can also be carried out using Cf.
Table S5 provides an interpretation of Cf values. A newly introduced index: the Biogeochemical Index BGI There is no universal index in the literature to evaluate the degree of heavy metal concentration in the O horizon of soils under forest and grassland vegetation.
For the calculations, knowledge of the heavy metal content in the O horizon and the directly underlying A horizon is necessary. It can be assumed that the higher the BGI values, the greater the capability of the O horizon to sorb heavy metals and neutralize xenobiotics, as well as reduce phytotoxicity. BGI is helpful to determine the ability of the O horizon to sorb pollutants.
Method for Assessing the Integrated Risk of Soil Pollution in Industrial and Mining Gathering Areas
Thus, values above 1. However, one should take into account the fact that the index does not consider the density of soil particles of O and A horizons; hence, BGI is only an approximation Mazurek et al.
Complex indices The complex indices group allows the specification, in a comprehensive way, of the degree of heavy metal pollution.
For the calculation of each of the complex indices, total concentrations of all analyzed heavy metals in soils as well as in some cases individual values of the calculated indices were used.
Sum of contamination PIsum A commonly applied index of heavy metal contamination in soils is the sum of contamination PIsum.
It can be defined as the sum of all determined contents of heavy metals in the soil, expressed as PI Gong et al.
This index provides an easy way to prove the deterioration of the soil conditions as a result of the accumulation of heavy metals Varol PLI classes are shown in Table S8. PIavg values in excess of 1. This index was introduced by Adamu and Nganje MEC values above 1. It was introduced by Pejman et al. CSI is also helpful to determine the limit of toxicity above which adverse impacts on the soil environment are observed.
The probability of toxicity MERMQ This index is used as an instrument to recognize the harmful impact on the soil environment of heavy metals Gao and Chen ; Pejman et al. An interpretation of this index is shown in Table S An interpretation of Cdeg is shown in Table S5.
Potential ecological risk RI Potential ecological risk RI is an index applicable for the assessment of the degree of ecological risk caused by heavy metal concentrations in the water, air, as well as the soil. Based on the potential ecological risk, five classes of soil quality were distinguished Table S Before the 20th century, most of the materials people used were completely natural produced from either plants, animals, or minerals found in the Earth so, when they were disposed of, the waste products they generated were natural and harmless too: mostly organic carbon-based materials that would simply biodegrade break down eventually into soil-like compost.
There was really nothing we could put into the Earth that was more harmful than anything we'd taken from it in the first place. But during the 20th century, the development of plastics polymers generally made in chemical plants from petroleum and other chemicals , composites made by combining two or more other materials , and other synthetic human-created materials has produced a new generation of unnatural materials that the natural environment has no idea how to break down.
It can take years for a plastic bottle to biodegrade, for example. And while it's easy enough to recycle simple things such as cardboard boxes or steel cans, it's much harder to do the same thing with computer circuit boards made from dozens of different electronic components, themselves made from countless metals and other chemicals, all tightly bonded together and almost impossible to dismantle.
Nothing illustrates the problem of waste disposal more clearly than radioactive waste. When scientists discovered how to create energy by splitting atoms in nuclear power plants , they also created the world's hardest waste disposal problem. Nuclear plants produce toxic waste that can remain dangerously radioactive for thousands of years and, what's worse, will contaminate anything or anyone that comes into contact with it.
Nuclear plants that have suffered catastrophic accidents including the Chernobyl plant in the Ukraine, which exploded in , and the Fukushima plant in Japan, which was damaged by an earthquake in are generally sealed with concrete and abandoned indefinitely.
Not surprisingly, local communities object vociferously to having nuclear waste stored anywhere near them. Mining Photo: The world's biggest copper mine, Escondida Mine in Chile, is so big you can even see the scar on the landscape from space.
But we all use copper it's in the computer you're using right now so is this actual "land pollution" or just very necessary land use? Although there are many responsible mining companies, and environmental laws now tightly restrict mining in some countries, mines remain among the most obvious scars on and under the landscape.
Surface mining sometimes called quarrying or opencast mining requires the removal of topsoil the fertile layer of soil and organic matter that is particularly valuable for agriculture to get at the valuable rocks below.
Even if the destruction of topsoil is the worst that happens, it can turn a productive landscape into a barren one, which is a kind of pollution. You might think a mine would only remove things from the land, causing little or no pollution, but mining isn't so simple. Most metals, for example, occur in rocky mixtures called ores, from which the valuable elements have to be extracted by chemical, electrical, or other processes.
That leaves behind waste products and the chemicals used to process them, which historically were simply dumped back on the land. Since all the waste was left in one place, the concentration of pollution often became dangerously high. When mines were completely worked out, all that was left behind was contaminated land that couldn't be used for any other purpose.
Often old mines have been used as landfills, adding the insult of an inverted garbage mountain to the injury of the original damage. But at least it saved damaging more land elsewhere.
Urbanization Humans have been making permanent settlements for at least 10, years and, short of some major accident or natural disaster, most of the cities and towns we've created, and the infrastructure that keeps them running, will remain with us for thousands more years into the future.
Not many of us would automatically classify cities and other human settlements as "land pollution"; people obviously need to live and work somewhere. Even so, urbanization marks a hugely important change to the landscape that can cause land pollution in a variety of subtle and not-so-subtle ways.
Chart: Urbanization goes hand-in-hand with other changes in land use, such as deforestation. In , the world had about 96 percent as much forested area as it had in —a huge loss of forest in total.
This chart shows 15 example countries that have either gained forest green or lost it orange , with the world total shown in the middle yellow. For each country, the bar shows the percentage of forest area in compared to , so percent would be no change. Drawn by explainthatstuff. With over 7. Our impact on the planet extends much further than urbanization might suggest.
Way back in , Herbert Girardet estimated that London, England has an ecological footprint area of land needed to support it some times bigger than the city itself . Add up that effect for every major city in the world and you get an idea of how big an impact urbanization has had. Today's figures are staggering. According to the Global Footprint Network, the ecological footprint of most countries what they use hugely exceeds their biocapacity what they can produce : in the United States, the ecological footprint per person is 2.
One of the problems of urbanization is that, by concentrating people, it concentrates their waste products at the same time.
So, for example, crudely disposing of sewage from a big city automatically creates water or land pollution, where the same number of people and the same volume of sewage might not create a problem if it were created in 10 smaller cities or small towns.
Concentration is always a key factor when we talk about pollution. Having said that, it's important to remember that urbanization, when it works, can also help people to live very efficiently.
Thus, New York has the lowest ecological footprint of any state in the USA, largely because people there have smaller homes and make greater use of public transportation . Photo: Greenfield to brownfield: This once-green field will soon be a large housing estate. People need homes to live in, but they also need green spaces—and agricultural land to feed them.
Agricultural chemicals Those of us who are lucky enough to live in rich countries take our basic survival for granted: aside from trips to the grocery store, we don't worry about where our food comes from or how it gets to us.
The reality is that seven billion hungry people consume a vast amount of food. Feeding the world on such a scale is only possible because agriculture now works in an industrial way, with giant machines such as tractors and combine harvesters doing the work that hundreds of people would have done in the past, and chemicals such as fertilizers and pesticides herbicides that kill weeds and insecticides that kill bugs increasing the amount of food that can be grown on each piece of land.
Unfortunately, most pesticides are by definition poisons, and many remain in the soil or accumulate there for years. One infamous and now widely banned pesticide, DDT , is not ordinarily biodegradable so it has remained in the environment ever since it was first used in the midth century and even spread to such places as Antarctica .
DDT is just one of many organic carbon-based chemicals that remain in the environment for years or decades, known as persistent organic pollutants. Atmospheric deposition Air pollution doesn't remain air pollution forever.
Ideally it disperses, so the concentration of problematic chemicals becomes so low that it no longer constitutes pollution. Sometimes, though, it falls back to the ground and becomes either water pollution if it enters the oceans, rivers , and lakes or land pollution. Pollution created "deposited" in water or land from existing pollution in the air atmosphere is known as atmospheric deposition. Land can become polluted by deposition in some very unexpected ways.
For example, a corridor of land either side of a highway or freeway becomes systematically polluted over time with all kinds of harmful byproducts of road travel—everything from fuel spills and brake linings to dust worn from the pavement and heavy metal deposits such as lead washed from the engines.
These chemicals accumulate in the soil where they can undergo reactions with one another and form substances that are even more toxic . Two important things are worth noting about atmospheric deposition. First, it means no land on Earth—not even the most isolated island—can be considered completely safe from pollution: even if it's hundreds or thousand miles from the nearest factory or human settlement, even if no human has ever lived there, it could still be polluted from the air.
Second, if you're doing something that causes pollution maybe spreading weedkiller on your garden or perhaps running a factory where ash is discharged from a smokestack , the effects are not necessarily going to be confined to the place where the pollution is first produced.
It's important to remember that pollution knows no boundaries. Soil erosion Photo: Soil erosion turns fields into deserts. If you define "land pollution" as irreversible damage to the land, you have to include soil erosion as a type of pollution too. Many people think soil is soil, always there, never changing, ever ready to grow whatever crops we choose to bury in it. In reality, soil is a much more complex growing habitat that remains productive only when it is cared for and nurtured.
Too much wind or water, destruction of soil structure by excessive plowing, excessive nutrients, overgrazing, and overproduction of crops erode soil, damaging its structure and drastically reducing its productivity until it's little more than dust. At its worst, soil erosion becomes desertification: once-productive agricultural areas become barren, useless deserts. How serious is the problem? In , former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan warned the world that: "Drought and desertification threaten the livelihood of over 1 billion people in more than countries around the world.
Deforestation doesn't only harm the place where the trees are cut down. A study by Princeton University researchers found that if the site rainforest were completely destroyed, it would have a dramatic effect on the atmosphere, which would carry across to places like the United States, causing drought and potentially desertification there as well .
Unfortunately, because soil erosion has so far affected developing countries more than the developed world, it's a problem that receives relatively little attention. Accelerating climate change will soon alter that.
In a future of hotter weather and more intense storms, it will become increasingly difficult to maintain soil in a fertile and productive state, while heavy rainstorms and flash floods will wash away topsoil more readily.
Meanwhile, agriculture may become impossible in coastal areas inundated by saltwater carried in by rising sea levels.Mining Photo: The world's biggest copper mine, Escondida Mine in Chile, is so big you can even see the scar on the landscape from space.
An interpretation of Cdeg is shown in Table S5. Nuclear plants produce toxic waste that can remain dangerously radioactive for thousands of years and, what's worse, will contaminate anything or anyone that comes into contact with it.
Soil Use and Managament. In the United States, the Environmental Protection Agency EPA is in charge of cleaning up uncontrolled hazardous waste sites, which are referred to as "Superfund" sites. Chart: Although most of the waste we produce is relatively harmless and easy to dispose of blue , around one fifth of it orange, yellow, and green is dangerous or toxic and extremely difficult to get rid of without automatically contaminating land.
Complex indices The complex indices group allows the specification, in a comprehensive way, of the degree of heavy metal pollution. Effect on wildlife: