Soil pollution is caused by a number of factors; however, most of them are human-induced. In simple words, soil pollution refers to the contamination of the soil when some unwanted external compound gets mixed with it. This compound could be in the form of soluble chemicals or non-biodegradable compounds like plastic. Chemical fertilizers and pesticides used in farming are some of the causes of soil pollution. Harmful chemicals get mixed with the soil and make it infertile. Also, waste from the urban areas, if not disposed of properly, reaches the soil and pollutes it.
Long and Short Essay on Soil Pollution
Essay 1 (250 words)
Soil pollution is the contamination of the soil of fertile land which is gradually increasing day by day mainly because of the use of fertilizers and industrialization. Soil pollution has become a major challenge to the whole human fraternity in modern times. Soil is the most important natural resource highly required to maintain a healthy life here. It is the home for many small animals, it is the life of plants and used by human beings to produce a variety of crops to continue the life cycle here. However, increasing the human population increases the need for crop production and other technological resources to live life comfortably. There are many highly effective fertilizers available in the market proving their best to improve crop production however getting more toxic and polluting the whole fertile soil when sprinkled over crops.
Varieties of other pesticides (like insecticides, fungicides, etc) are also getting used by the farmers to save their crops from insects and fungus. Such types of pesticides are also very toxic and spreading their side effects on the environment by polluting the land and air. Other ways of soil pollution are acidification, agrochemical pollution, salinization, and contamination by metalliferous wastes. Acidification is a common natural cause associated with long term leaching and microbial respiration which gradually decomposes the organic materials of soil (like humic and fulvic acids) which again stimulates leaching. The use of inorganic fertilizers on the fertile lands has increased the level of soil pollution by decreasing the soil fertility at a faster rate.
Essay 2 (300 words)
Soil pollution is the contamination of the fertile soil which reduces the productivity of soil because of various toxic pollutants. Toxic pollutants are very dangerous and adversely affect the physical, chemical and biological properties of the soil. Variety of pollutants such as pesticides, insecticides, fertilizers, chemicals, radioactive wastes, organic manure, discarded food, clothes, plastics, paper, leather goods, bottles, tins-cans, carcasses, etc gets mixed to the soil and cause soil pollution. Other released chemicals by various means like iron, mercury, lead, copper, cadmium, aluminum, zinc, industrial wastes, cyanides, acids, alkalies, etc are the toxic chemicals that cause soil pollution. Acid rain is a natural cause also affects soil fertility directly.
Earlier, the soil was very much fertile without the use of any fertilizers but nowadays all the farmers have started using very strong fertilizers in order to increase crop production because of the high demand for food by the increasing population. Improper, unnecessary and continuous use of a variety of strong organic or inorganic insecticides (DDT, benzene hexachloride, aldrin, etc), herbicides, fungicides, pesticides, etc in order to secure crops from insects, pests, fungus, etc are gradually toxifying the soil. All types of such chemicals have very dangerous effects directly on the plants’ growth (inhibits growth, reduces production and reduces the size of fruit) and indirectly on human health. Such chemicals slowly get absorbed by the soil and then plants which ultimately reaches the animals and human being’s body through the food chains.
Other radioactive wastes from sources like mining and nuclear processes reach the soil through water and affect the soil and ultimately to the plants, animals (through grazing) and humans (through food, milk, meat, etc). Eating such type of food causes growth retardation and abnormal growth of animals and humans. Increasing industrialization in the modern world creates a huge heap of wastes on a daily basis which directly or indirectly gets mixed to the soil and contaminates it.
Essay 3 (400 words)
Soil pollution is the contamination of fresh and fertile soil which adversely affects the health of crops, plants, animals, human beings and other organisms living in it. The addition of a variety of unwanted substances and toxic chemicals from many sources to the soil in the odd proportion causes whole land pollution. Once the pollutants get mixed to the soil remain in direct contact with soil for a long period of time. Increasing industrialization and increasing consumption of various effective fertilizers in the fertile land is continuously changing the soil composition and complexion of earth strata which is a very dangerous indication to the future of life on the earth.
All the fertile land on the earth is getting heavily polluted gradually day by day through the mixing of toxic materials released by the industries and domestic circles. Major sources of soil pollution are industrial wastes, urban wastes, chemical pollutants, metallic pollutants, biological agents, radioactive pollutants, wrong agricultural practices, etc. Industrial wastes released by the industrial processes contain organic, inorganic and non-biodegradable materials that have the ability to change physiochemical and biological characteristics of the soil. It totally disturbs the level of texture and mineral, bacterial and fungal colonies of the soil.
Urban wastes are solid wastes that include commercial and domestic wastes which make a huge heap on the soil and contribute to the soil pollution. Chemical pollutants and metallic pollutants are the industrial wastes from the textile, soap, dyes, synthetic, detergents, metal, and drug industries which are dumping their hazardous wastes continuously in the soil and water. It directly affects the living organisms of the soil and reduces the fertility level of the soil. Biological agents (such as bacteria, algae, fungi, protozoan and microorganisms like nematodes, millipedes, earthworms, snail, etc) also disturb the physiochemical and biological atmosphere of soil and cause soil pollution.
Some radioactive pollutants from sources like nuclear reactors, explosions, hospitals, scientific laboratories, etc go very deep to the soil, remain there for a long time and cause soil pollution. Wrong agricultural practices using advanced agro-technology means the use of huge quantities of toxic fertilizers including herbicides, weedicides, pesticides, etc enhances soil fertility however gradually declines the physio-chemical and biological property of the soil.
Other sources of soil pollution are municipal garbage heap, food processing wastes, mining practices, and many more. Soil pollution is very hazardous to health because toxic chemicals enter the body through the food chain and disturb the whole internal body system. In order to reduce and restrict the soil pollution, all the effective control measures including environment protection laws should be followed by the people especially industrialists. Recycling and reuse of the solid wastes and maximum possible tree plantation should be promoted among people.