Implications of Ground Contamination

It is essential to maintain a balanced relationship between man and environment. Day by day due to the increase in urbanisation and industrialisation ground is getting contaminated as large amount of waste is disposed off on the land. Ground contamination can affect the land as well as health of the human being adversely. Adding manmade chemicals to the natural land changes the original makeup of the ground and leads to ground contamination. Use of pesticides, underground storage tanks, dumping of waste, release of harmful industrial chemicals, discarding oil or fuel etc are some of the important factors that lead to ground contamination. Direct or indirect contamination of land also leads to contaminated water supply.

One of the major problems faced by the people who inhabit the land, due to ground contamination is related to their health. At our homes, schools, in gardens which taking recreationetc we come in contact with the ground and we inhale the unwanted soil contaminants or drink contaminated water, which potentiall has a bad impact on our health. When dangerous pollutants are exposed to the population then they can lead to serious problems like kidney and brain disfunction.

Ground contamination also affects our ecosystem badly as there are many harmful chemicals which may bring change in the ground chemistry by causing alteration in the metabolism of endemic microorganism. Poisonous herbicides, pesticides, insecticides, fungicides may affect the ground in a negative way. Ground contamination affects the ground water and so there is a greater risk of contaminating the water supply.

Landfills are one of the major sources of contamination and it arises due to dumping of refuse and waste. Protective layers are supposed to be formed on the ground to prevent harmful contaminants from getting into the water. If this layer is not formed succesfully then these harmful contaminants can get carried into and therefore can pollute the water. It is essential to look for the appropriate remedies which can reverse ground contamination. Ground contamination can beremediated in several ways such as usage of microbes which can absorb the harmful chemicals from the ground or by using high tech air stripping. In the UK ground contamination is controlled by environment agencies and DEFRA who publish guidelines that arewidely used. Contaminated land exposure assessment models are created in order to prevent land from becoming contaminated and this also concentrates on various health and environment aspects. Waste Disposal sites must be kept away from places where humans are likely to come into contact. Keeping a check on ground contamination can ensure a safer place to live.

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Brown Fisher Environmental LLP
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