What Are the Causes of Pollution?

causes-pollution Credit: Hollundluchphoto/Moment/Getty Images

The causes of pollution are excessive use of natural resources, over industrialization, increase in global population and globalization. The use of chemicals, such as pesticides and weedicides, cause soil pollution.

The introduction of pollutants into the air, water or soil is called pollution. The burning of fossil fuels to power industries and vehicles is a major cause of pollution. Generating electrical power through thermal power stations releases huge amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. As global population increases, the demand for fossil fuels increases causing additional pollution.

Water is polluted through the use of toxic chemicals that are then discharged into water sources such as lakes, rivers and streams. This improperly balances the water, which can lead to the death of species living in the ocean. Pesticides and oil spills also cause major pollution to the water as does the use of detergent for cleaning near major bodies of water. Underground water is also polluted due to such toxic chemicals.

Air pollution is the most dangerous form of pollution and comes from the chemicals released by the burning of various fuels. Some fuel is burned for cooking, heating and driving, while some is burned for industrial manufacturing. The burning of coal greatly contributes to air pollution because the smoke coming from factories, chimneys, wood burning and vehicles releases sulphur dioxide into the air.

Soil pollution is caused by pesticides and insecticides absorbing the nitrogen compounds of the soil, which prevents plants from getting sufficient nutrition from that soil. Deforestation, industrial waste and mining can also make the ground unsuitable for plant life.

Of the lesser causes of pollution, noise pollution is caused by loud noises, such as loud music and industrial machinery. Radioactive pollution comes from improperly handled radioactive material. Heat pollution comes from industry and air pollution raising an area's temperature higher than it should be. Light pollution can come from excess lighting, such as billboards or sporting events.