Summary

In this Study Session, you have learned that:

  • Biodegradation of organic matter removes oxygen from the water and can lead to deoxygenation with consequent harm to fish and other aquatic life.
  • High nutrient levels in water is called eutrophication. This process causes increasing density of algae and other plants which can reduce penetration of light into the water and cause deoxygenation when the plants die and decay.
  • Bioaccumulation is the gradual build-up of chemicals in the bodies of living organisms. Increasing accumulation through the levels of a food chain is called biomagnification. Eating food such as fish containing bioaccumulated chemicals will damage human health.
  • Humans are exposed to pollutants by ingestion with water and food, inhalation through breathing and absorption through the skin.
  • Pollution prevention means avoiding or minimising the production of wastes before they are released into the environment. Pollution control involves measures to limit the damage caused by pollutants.
  • Pollution control is supported by principles such as the polluter pays principle, the precautionary principle and the principle of duty of care, and by relevant legislation and policies.

Last modified: Tuesday, 2 August 2016, 4:42 PM