Essay on The Air And Water Pollution

777 Words 4 Pages
2.1 Air Pollution
The air and water in China, especially in the urban areas, are among the most polluted in the world. According to a report of the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1998, of the ten most polluted cities in the world, seven can be found in China. Sulfur dioxide and soot caused by coal combustion are two major air pollutants, resulting in the formation of acid rain, which now falls on about 30% of China’s total land area. Industrial boilers and furnaces consume almost half of China’s coal and are the largest sources of urban air pollution. The burning of coal for cooking and heating in many cities accounts for the rest.
Mercury released into the air by coal-fired power plants is captured by raindrops, and transferred to the soil and groundwater. Groundwater is polluted by runoff from factories, smelters and mining operations, and then used by farmers downstream to irrigate their crops. Heavy use of fertilizers has contributed to contamination also. Fertilizers in China often contain high levels of metals, especially cadmium, which is harmful.
2.2 Water pollution
Decades of waste poured from factories and cities into China 's rivers have turned many of them into open sewers. About 40% of the water in the country 's river systems has a quality index of 3 or worse, meaning that it is unfit for human consumption.
The water quality of major lakes (including reservoirs) and urban lakes is also relatively poor, with many suffering algal blooms and eutrophication.…

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