Ms. Sidra Hanif, Green Blogger, Dept. of Environmental Sciences, GCWUS
Soil pollution has become a big problem today globally. Soil pollution assign to anything that causes contamination of soil and degrades the soil quality. in this pollutants reduce the quality of the soil and convert the soil to unsuitable form for microorganisms and macroorganisms living in the soil.
The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization states that UN spoil soil 18 time more than others. Soil pollution can be natural or due to human activity. However, it mostly due to the activities of the human that causes the majority of soil pollution such as industrial pollution, overuse of pesticides and herbicides, solid waste, inferior irrigation practices, urban activities, inorganic fertilizers, and chlorinated organic toxins etc. As a result of these unsuitable activities the soil lose its fertility rapidly. Moreover, the presence of excess chemicals will increase the alkalinity or acidity of soil thus degrading the soil quality.
Contact with contaminated soil may be direct, from using parks, schools etc., and indirect by inhaling soil contaminants which have vaporized or through the consumption of plants or animals that have accumulated large amounts of soil pollutants, and may also result from contamination of water supplies and from deposition of air contaminants.
It causes harmful effects on the soil and the environment at large. Contamination of soil will decrease the agricultural output ( it is estimated that 50% soil erosion reduce 25% crop yield ) of a land. Agriculture accounts Major sector of Pakistan and contribute 26% of GDP. Major soil pollution after effects are: negative impacts on ecosystem and biodiversity, inferior soil quality, harmful human health effects, pollute water resources etc.
It is very tough task to reduce and completely stop the soil pollution because it takes approximately 500 years to form 1inch of topsoil ; however very urgent to do something for healthy life on the earth.
-Lack of awareness is the primary cause of soil pollution due to which humans perform unsuitable activities Therefore, it is very important to educate people around you the importance of environment if they are not aware. Thus, it is our small steps and activities that can help us to achieve a healthier planet for us. Therefore, it is essential for industries, individuals and businesses to understand the importance of soil and prevent soil pollution and stop the destruction caused to plant and animal life.
-After awareness which is involve in priority we should took other actions such as government should make laws and policies to use organic fertilizers instead of inorganic fertilizers or put extra charges to buy inorganic fertilizers. Not only make these laws and policies thier implementation should also continue
-Soil erosion can be prevented by a variety of forestary and farming practices
-Waste should be disposed in a proper way and reduce, reuse and recycling concept should be kept in mind
-Bioremediation ( use of microbes to consume toxic compounds from soil ) and phytoremeiation ( use of plants to extract contaminants from soil ) concept should be follow to clean contaminated soil
-All of above ideas are not perfect solution to control soil pollution.Preventing contamination in the first place is the best way to go. So choose to farm orgnically is a good way to protect the soil (and yourself) from chemicals found in pesticides and other common toxic chemicals.