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Pollution: Obtaining and using certain energy
resources -- fossil fuels and nuclear energy can pollute the land.
Coal and other minerals: To obtain coal, the land is
mining gouges out the surface of the land. (It scars the land)
top-soil is buried under rocks.
rocks are exposed to precipitation, acids are washed away.
- These acids
seep into the ground also polluting the land and soil.
Wastes: Any discarded material that causes death or
serious harm to human health
when factories discard or release toxic (poisonous) chemicals.
wastes are stored in barrels and buried in dumps. These barrels can leak over time,
releasing toxic chemicals into the land.
- Try to
produce less of them by reusing some wastes.
treat the material - sometimes adding some chemicals or water can
neutralize or weaken them. - The problem with this is that this is
Wastes: They are the discarded material from making energy in a
nuclear power plant.
- Most threatening
form of land pollution
into two types depending on their half-life.
is the time it takes for half of the material to decay (become
non-radioactive or harmful). We
look at half-lives because radioactive material are never completely gone.
radioactive wastes: They are mostly the used fuel rods of a
have long half-lives about 10,000 years or more.
impossible to safely discard.
use to bury them in concrete or glass containers and then bury
them. They would eventually
corrode and leak, allowing radioactive wastes to escape and pollute the
wastes can cause cancer and other serious illnesses
radioactive wastes: These are the contaminated clothing or equipment
used by power-plant workers.
have short half-lives. They decay
are not usually a problem to discard safely.
Solutions: Scientists suggest alternatives to
deep within the earth (into magma)
deep on the ocean floor
it up in rockets to the sun
- All of
these methods are extremely costly and prohibitive - we must find
Wastes: Any useless, unwanted, discarded materials. (Garbage)
are many sources of solid wastes:
Waste materials from farming.
garbage from homes
garbage from factories or businesses
includes bottles, newspapers, packaging, food, rubbers etc.
cart them away and put them in dumps or sanitary landfills:
garbage is just piles in a secluded spot.
There are many problems with dumps; rats, bacteria, smell,
dangerous gases and it oozes into the soil. This is not used today!
landfills: garbage is compacted, then covered with a
layer of topsoil and planted with grass. No hazardous wastes are allowed. When they are filled they can be used
as parks or other recreational area.
Many places use sanitary landfills to discard their garbage.
with sanitary landfills:
chemicals ooze out through leaks in containers.
garbage decomposes, dangerous methane gas is produced. It is poisonous and a fire hazard. Can be solved by installing a gas well.
can't find places to put them. Nobody
wants them in their neighborhood.
to sanitary landfills:
Dumping: the problem is we pollute our waters
The problem is we pollute the air
This is the best solution (considered the solid waste solution of the
future, however not everything is recyclable and not many people recycle!