• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Humans impacts on the environment.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Introduction Humans have a big impact on the environment. They reduce the amount of land available for other animals and plants by: * Building * Quarrying * Farming; * Dumping waste Humans also tend to pollute the Earth by polluting the: * Water - with sewage, fertilisers, or toxic chemicals * Air - with smoke and gases such as sulphur dioxide * Land - with toxic chemicals, such as pesticides, which may be washed from the land into the water In this report I will be focusing on some of the most important things human impact on which cause harmful effects to the environment which are: * Acid Rain * Population Growth * Deforestation and global warming * Water pollution via fertilisers and sewage Population Growth Population Growth is another factor which has a major impact on the environment. When the Earth's human population was smaller, the effects of human activity were usually small and local but nowadays the human population is rapidly growing. This is due to agricultural development and economic expansion which led to improvements in nutrition, living conditions and medicine. These improvements have reduced the incidence of infectious diseases in the general population, but mainly in children. This accounted for most of the fall in deaths and as a cause of this the death rate has dropped dramatically. Birth rates have also been falling, but not as much and therefore the human population will continue to grow but this means that: * The rapid population growth will overstress the Earth's natural resources. ...read more.

Middle

As the acidity of the water increases, the water becomes clearer but plants and animals are unable to survive. Aluminium is insoluble in water but as the acidity of the water increases, aluminium becomes more soluble and is released into the water from the soil, harming fish and other aquatic animals. Also all lakes and rivers have their own fragile ecosystem with many different species of plants and animals all depending on one another to survive. If a species of fish is killed, this can affect the whole food web e.g. the animals which feed on the extinct fish will gradually disappear. 3). BUILDINGS - Acid rain helps to erode objects quicker. Statues, buildings, pipes and cars can all suffer from this. The worst affected are things made from limestone and marble as these types of rock are particularly susceptible and can be affected by air pollution in gaseous form as well as by acid rain. 4). HUMAN HEALTH - Acid rain can also result in human health concerns. It can aggravate respiratory ailments such as bronchitis and asthma. Drinking water may also be affected due to it may containing higher levels of toxic metals which have been dissolved from soils and pipes, increasing the acidity of drinking water supplies. Deforestation and global warming Deforestation is the clearing of tropical forests across the Earth. ...read more.

Conclusion

penetration of light into the water is diminished and therefore decreases the productivity of plants and hence their production of oxygen.' * rapid growth of microorganisms e.g. algae, which feed upon the dead organisms so that it is recycled. * the water becomes depleted in oxygen due to the increased use of oxygen by the microorganisms for respiration. The oxygen cannot be replenished due to the lack of water plants in the darkened, deeper waters. * lowered oxygen results in the death of fish and other aquatic animals, due to oxygen shortage. * Further, some of the algal species that 'bloom' produce toxins that render the water useful. The result is a foul smelling, waste filled body of water, which has occurred in many places e.g. Baltic Sea. Sewage is primarily organic in nature and therefore is prone to bacterial decay. As a result, untreated sewage is a source of food for microorganisms. This means that the oxygen concentration in the water will be reduced and therefore aquatic life is stared of the oxygen it needs and also leads to the breakdown of proteins and other nitrogenous compounds, releasing hydrogen sulphide and ammonia, both toxic to marine organisms. Solids suspended in sewage may also blanket river and sea beds preventing respiration and blocking light. The decaying organic matter and nutrients in sewage enhance plant growth and therefore starts the process of eutrophication. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Aqueous Chemistry section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Aqueous Chemistry essays

  1. Investigating the effects of varying pH levels on the germination of cress seeds

    Using the same five labelled 10cm� syringes, I added a further 10cm� of each solution to the corresponding sample petri dishes. I repeated these daily tasks every 24 hours for a further 4 days. Throughout the experiment, I did as much as I could to control all variables to make the experiment more accurate and fair.

  2. The effect of Acid Rain on Seed Germination.

    This anomalous result could be the result of a number of different factors. One or two of the seeds in the dish could have been already damaged and so didn't germinate when perhaps they should of. This will have caused my average length for this concentration to be a lot

  1. Acid RainWhat is Acid Rain?Acid rain is a result of air pollution. When any ...

    As acid rain falls on a forest it trickles through the leaves of the trees and runs down into the soil below. Some of it finds its way into streams and then on into rivers and lakes. Some types of soil can help to neutralise the acid - they have what is called a "buffering capacity".

  2. Acidic Environment Assignment

    Cl2O7 (g) + H2O (g) � 2HClO4 (aq) The Industrial Revolution The period in British history known as "The Industrial Revolution" brought about unprecedented changes to British society, culminating in the transition from a mainly cottage industry-based economy around the time of 1750 to an almost fully industrialised and machine-based economy around 1850.

  1. Acid Rain

    Similar to scrubbers on power plants, catalytic converters reduce NOx emissions from cars. These devices have been required for over twenty years, and it is important to keep them working properly and tailpipe restrictions have been tightened recently. (Bown, 1990:152)

  2. Lipids and their role in living organisms.

    and fruits because fats and oils are insoluble in water, and are therefore osmotically inactive. This makes them a useful storage form, for example, olives or peanuts. 4. Lipids are a component of cell membranes in the form of phospholipids.

  1. Determination of toxicity to an invertebrate population.

    The time the Daphnia were placed in the bottles was noted and 30 minutes later the number of dead Daphnia in each bottle was recorded. Results The results from the experiment were recorded and are shown in Table 1. Table 1 - Number of dead Daphnia in given concentrations of copper (II)

  2. Establish what types of soil holds the most water and to see if changing ...

    caused more water to be absorbed but actually a chemical reaction will take place between the alkali and the minerals in soil which are usually acidic causing a molecular change and different compounds to be formed and possibly even a gas being given off so less water will get through

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work