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WHAT IS POLLUTION?
I think that the most succinct definition I can come up with
is "the introduction of any substance or agent into an
environment which has a detrimental effect on the ecosystem of
that environment." For the purposes of this discussion, the
only form of pollution which will be considered is that emanating
from Man's activities.
Man pollutes his environment by introducing chemicals and
other substances, either toxic by their nature of by their
quantity and effect, into the air, the land, the waterways and
the oceans. In fact, their isn't really anywhere left on this
planet that man hasn't polluted. He does this by burning fossil
fuels, by dumping industrial and chemical waste, by burying or
strewing his excessive consumer garbage, by accidental spillage
(sometimes on a grand scale), by overuse of chemical fertilisers
and pesticides. Oh, and a living human being produces his or her
own natural wastes of course.
Man does these things in
such quantities that the entire World's intricate web of
ecosystems is in peril and it seems to me that most polluters
have not recognised that Man, himself, is part of and reliant
upon those ecosystems and their correct functioning.
is a cost implication to pollution. For instance, in China, with
a population of 1.3 billion, the World Bank estimates that air
and water pollution costs between 3.5% and 8% of the nation's
gross domestic product in health losses related to air
pollution, indoor air pollution and chronic disease from water