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Nature has taken hundreds and thousands of years to shape this world up. And we, the human beings, are determined to destroy the earth at the earliest. Water is being contaminated and polluted like anything. 

Geographically, 70 % of earth is made up of water and the rest is made up of land. But as a matter of fact, human beings are bringing the entire 70 % of water under peril and intoxicating it through a careless attitude to the environment. Industrial effluents, sewage and farm wastes are the major pollutants threatening the sanctity of our water resources.

The organic and inorganic contaminants are acids, alkalis, carbohydrates, dyes, fats, soaps, waxes, gases, suspended matter, oil, toxic metals and pesticides including radioactive materials and heated effluents that impose thermal load on receiving waters. Biological pollutants include bacteria, viruses, plants and animals. The other main contaminants are:

Acids:
Both organic and inorganic acids are discharged into rivers as industrial wastes. Sulphuric acid is the main constituents with nitric acid, hydrochloric acid and phosphoric acid. These acids can damage metals or concrete structures by their corrosive action. 

Alkalis:
Alkalis alter the pH value in rivers resulting in the break off of the natural buffer system. Alkalis too destroy bacterial and other micro-organisms to restrict the self-purification of the stream. Fishes and other aquatic life are also affected in the process.

Suspended Impurities: 
Insoluble matter in suspension is the common form of pollution as it is present in sewage and industrial waste waters reducing the photosynthetic activity of water-plants. Suspended matter chokes the gills of fish and destroys aquatic life. 

Gaseous Pollutants: 
It includes ammonia, free chlorine, hydrogen sulphide, ozone and phospine. Ammonia produces a spasm of the glottis leading to death and acts like poison to fishes when it enters their body through gills.

Oils: 
Replacement of coal by oil as a fuel has aggravated the problem of pollution. Oil spreads over the surface of water, thus inhibiting the diffusion of oxygen into water thereby coating the gills of fishes and affecting their respiration. 

Toxic Metals: 
It includes metals such as mercury, cadmium, lead, chromium, copper and arsenic.
 

 

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