Waste disposal is one crucial problem which the country must look into. Industries produce a lot of products, thereby increasing the amount of wastes disposed. We could imagine how these wastes can destroy our environment when not properly disposed.
For better understanding of why waste disposal is important and the effects to the environment, it will be necessary to briefly read this article. Improper disposal of waste and illegal movement of waste can cause a negative effect on human health and environment.
This negative effects could be due to the ways we handle and dispose waste differently in the soil, water and air. Waste that are not disposed adequately/ properly or not treated well may cause health problems for humans living in various surroundings in the area the waste were disposed.
The leakage from this waste end up contaminating the soil, water and produce air pollution and other waste caused by mismanagement which can also affect humans and the environment. Therefore, managing waste in every environment is mandatory and important.
7 Environmental Effects of Waste Disposal
Below are the major environmental effects of waste disposal;
1. Water Pollution
When waste does not find themselves in the appropriate place like the landfills or other disposal areas, it finds its way into the ocean or other bodies of water. When it finds its way into the ocean, it gradually contaminates the water and the lives of the aquatic animals.
This increase the toxics in waters, making fresh waters unsafe for humans to consume and making the water not conducive for aquatic animals to live in. we all know how water travels and its nature, these chemicals that find their way into the water won’t leave the water easily, and it continuously contaminates other waters.
Water is a unique and excellent substance, it has the capacity to contain different dissolved chemicals. As a result of this, while flowing, the waters can pick up pollutions along the way. It often carries dissolved substances like gases and chemicals.
Rainfalls that are easily mixed with toxic liquid drops into the water streams to flow and end up in the nearby water bodies. As a result of this, the neighborhood lake, taps or wells are contaminated by these waters and open to dangers.
All the living organisms living nearby, that make use of these waters, gets infected. Now this waste has affected the environment and the health of humans.
2. Air Pollution
The air is virtually what nobody can avoid, it is a major issue globally, we breathe in air daily, but when this air is polluted it becomes highly dangerous for us to inhale. And understanding how improper waste disposal affects the environment through air pollution is important.
When waste are disposed improperly, it contributes excess gases which goes into the atmosphere and causes problems.
Occasionally, we burn papers and plastics at the landfill, causing landfill gas, these chemicals released comes together and contribute to the ozone layer and also hurt the surrounding and the human population.
Methane gas and dioxin released in the air has been proven to have harmful effect on us. All of this, places a negative role on human health and the environment, if this waste is not properly managed.
3. Climate Change
Dangerous gases from greenhouse are gotten from decomposing waste. These gases rise up to the atmosphere and traps the heat. This therefore causes a drastic weather reaction in the form of storms and typhoons.
We are also affected by the level of precipitation in the air, from acid rain to serious hail storms or global warming. This therefore spreads out to our various areas, causing radioactive pollution.
4. Plant Death
The plants survive from the air and water, when the air and water are contaminated it have a horrible effects on the plants, soils that has been contaminated will kill the plants.
Even without the soil been contaminated, the water provided by the rain can also be toxic for the plants and kills them.
5. Limited Habitats
Animals have environments they adapt to, and environments they can’t adapt to, there are specific environments that they can survive in, this is why we often see a specific kind of animal in some places.
However, these wastes contributes to climate change, which also make changes the size of habitat an animal need to survive in. if the habitat of these animals are limited, they will not be able to survive.
6. Dangerous Zones
When we continue to fill the landfills with wastes, it gets to a point the landfill becomes too occupied, and it becomes a dangerous place for anyone to go in.
We should also remember that these wastes attracts dangerous reptiles like snakes, scorpions, centipede, etc. that are very dangerous. When we keep increasing and dumping our waste improperly, we are creating a place where nothing or no one else can exist in it.
Improper disposal and unprocessed waste is a dwelling place for disease. Any kind of disease can find their place there. Contaminated waters can host different disease. These diseases affect animals, humans and plants.
Improper Waste Disposal Can Cause Long-Term Effects
Long-term effects include signs of hereditary change in animals, cancer and other diseases in humans, trash in our waterways and green spaces, and destruction of many natural resources.
Populations of insects such as bees, which are important for preserving the fertility of plant life, are dying off faster than they can repopulate due to human pollution.
The chemicals can seep into soil, interrupting plants’ normal growth processes. Another long-term impact of hazardous waste is the danger it causes to our water table. Chemicals can soak through soil and enter underground aquifers.