If one digs deep into any type of soil, he/she will see that it is made up of several layers. When these layers are combined, they form a soil profile, which tells the story about a soil. The soil, the layer covering the surface of the earth, is formed from the deposit of parent material at the top of it (Marrugo-Negrete, José Pinedo-Hernández and Sergi Díez, 382). This parent material can either be weathered bedrock or constituted of mineral particles settled by the wind, glaciers or water. Various soil forming factors and sun, water, wind, living organism, and ice work on the substance to slowly transform it into the soil.
Soil Erosion Attributes
Soil changes over time and this increases erosion. As a natural process, soil erosion has an adverse impact on all types of landforms. The thinning of the topsoil due to various reasons including the forces of wind and water or human activities like tilling is termed as soil erosion. It can be an extremely slow process that is not noticed or can happen at a rapid rate, facilitating the substantial loss of the topsoil (Marrugo-Negrete, José Pinedo-Hernández and Sergi Díez, 385). Certain other factors of the soil also could speed up erosion like acidity, absence proper internal drainage, densification, the inadequate presence of organic substances, and salinity in the soil. Since soil erosion is destroying the quality of soil, it is posing a serious problem to the growth of vegetation and this threatens life on earth as we know it.
Air and Water Pollution Mitigation Measures
Pollution is an issue of concern across the US and is the result of the introduction of contaminants to the environment that may lead to negative shifts in environmental conditions. The federal government has taken a series of steps to mitigate issues related to air and water pollution in the country. The key steps that the federal government has taken include:
- update of national soil quality standards;
- creation of environmental statutes and regulations;
- the setup of a monitoring network to examine soil quality;
- the introduction of alternative and cleaner fuel options such as biogas fuel;
- endorsement of waste disposal processes;
- update of the national soil quality index.
The U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is the main regulatory body of the federal government that has the duty of controlling water and air pollution. The avowed duty of the EPA is to take the measures to safeguard people’s health and the environment (Liu et al. 55). It also focuses on maintaining the quality of air and water because the entire life on the earth is depended on the health of nature. The EPA has the role of deploying and enforcing more than 24 key environmental statutes. Some of the most important statutes include the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (Superfund), the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act.
Modern researchers in the discipline of anthropology have noted that climate change is one of the problems facing humanity in the current century. It is for this reason that the issue of air, water, and land pollution has become of essence and organizations are being urged to adopt environmental conservation measures for reducing the rate of global pollution. This discussion aims at water pollution with respect to certain prevailing conditions of our oceans when compared to the past century.
The Health of Our Oceans
It would be important to note that the health of oceans has been proven deteriorating as a result of numerous activities facing water pollution. Firstly, it is proven that waters – in oceans describing a marine route – cannot support life in contrast to the last century (Vaz S. Silva et al. 12). This is attributed to the oil spillages on these routes creating a chemical substance on top of the water layers. It is this layer that prevents adequate sunlight penetration to marine life, and this makes it difficult to survive in a low oxygen area.
The General Pollution of the Oceans
It would also be critical to note the massive sand mining practices across most coastal towns and islands. Sand, as a raw material, is used by many manufacturing companies such as glasses and cement. Sand, in its chemical form, is used in the manufacturing of all plastics which constitute a significant part of the most demanded commodities. These practices have posed a danger to local communities as sea water rises to levels that exceed the average height of houses. This is a critical health attribute of the ocean which if not adequately mitigated, could lead to massive loss of lives.
It is important to note that the Paris Agreement on Climate change has played an important role in conserving the modern environment. According to this pact, involved member countries agreed to ensure that carbon emissions – with water pollution as a subsidiary goal – are reduced to significantly lower levels (Dimitrov 3). As a result, the transportation (by water) of crude oil and its subsequent use is being discouraged in order to conserve the modern environment. Different mitigation measures have been adopted by the Paris Agreement that aid in improving the health condition of our oceans.
Dimitrov, Radoslav S. “The Paris agreement on climate change: Behind closed doors.” Global Environmental Politics16.3 (2016): 1-11.
Eklöf, Karin, Rolf Lidskog, and Kevin Bishop. “Managing Swedish forestry’s impact on mercury in fish: Defining the impact and mitigation measures.” Ambio 45.2 (2016): 163- 174.
Ito, T., Nenes, A., Johnson, M. S., Meskhidze, N., & Deutsch, C. (2016). Acceleration of oxygen decline in the tropical Pacific over the past decades by aerosol pollutants. Nature Geoscience, 9(6), 443.
Liu, Dexin, et al. “Spatial distribution of soil magnetic susceptibility and correlation with heavy metal pollution in Kaifeng City, China.” Catena 139 (2016): 53-60.
Marrugo-Negrete, José, José Pinedo-Hernández, and Sergi Díez. “Assessment of heavy metal pollution, spatial distribution and origin in agricultural soils along the Sinú River Basin, Colombia.” Environmental research 154 (2017): 380-388.
Vaz S. Silva, Sabrina, et al. “The impact of water pollution on fish species in southeast region of Goiás, Brazil.” Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A 79.1 (2016): 8- 16.