Examples of degradable pollutants are sewage, paper products, vegetables, juice, seeds and leaves. These are pollutants that are broken down naturally by micro-organisms and are not harmful to the environment. Degradable pollutants are often used as fertilizer.
According to Eco Evaluator, degradable pollutants are only harmful when present in large quantities within the environment. They are broken down through chemical, physical and biological processes. The ability of micro-organisms to break down degradable materials is based on their enzymatic activity. Pollution is classified into water, air and land pollution depending on the component of the environment affected by pollutants. Non-biodegradable materials are harmful to the environment because they are not broken down easily. Examples of non-biodegradable materials are plastics, metal, rubber and glass. Most waste materials within landfills are non-biodegradable. Pollutants cause harm to man, plants and animals, and in extreme cases may cause death. Pollution of the environment is a result of reliance on industries and technology. Governments create laws to protect the environment from pollutants. These laws are enforced by government agencies. Environmental programs within both the private and public sectors also contribute to the preservation of the environment. There are specific legal guidelines on the use and dumping of waste materials designed to reduce environmental pollution and its undesired effects.