Engineering » Environmental Engineering

Water Pollution

Edited by Nuray Balkis, ISBN 978-953-307-962-2, 214 pages, Publisher: InTech, Chapters published February 24, 2012 under CC BY 3.0 license
DOI: 10.5772/1418

Water pollution is a major global problem that requires ongoing evaluation and revision of water resource policy at all levels (from international down to individual aquifers and wells). It has been suggested that it is the leading worldwide cause of deaths and diseases, and that it accounts for the deaths of more than 14,000 people daily. In addition to the acute problems of water pollution in developing countries, industrialized countries continue to struggle with pollution problems as well. Water is typically referred to as polluted when it is impaired by anthropogenic contaminants and either does not support a human use, such as drinking water, and/or undergoes a marked shift in its ability to support its constituent biotic communities, such as fish. Natural phenomena such as volcanoes, algae blooms, storms, and earthquakes also cause major changes in water quality and the ecological status of water. Most water pollutants are eventually carried by rivers into the oceans.