Soil contamination, pollution and degradation mean different things; however, the majority of people consider them as one thing. Here’s the difference:
Soil contamination occurs when the concentration of nutrients and chemicals in the soil becomes higher than it naturally or normally is, as a result of industrialization and human action. If the soil contamination starts to harm living organisms, you can call it soil pollution. Soil doesn’t need to be highly contaminated to cause damage to humans. Even a slightly contaminated soil may harm humans and other living organisms directly through bioaccumulation, which occurs when vegetation is grown in a lightly polluted soil.
Soil pollution is usually caused by harmful chemicals and substances that penetrate the soil and destroy living organisms in the soil and damage water ecosystems. Although soil pollution is not easily visible to naked eye, its effects can be super damaging and catastrophic.
Soil degradation is the decline in soil quality. It occurs when the soil gets polluted and loses its value as a result of erosion and over farming.
The Causes of Soil Contamination
Herbicides and pesticides and other farming chemicals often result in soil contamination. Industrial waste, leakages in sewage, and underground storage tanks can also contribute to soil contamination. Floods or rainwater from other polluted areas or water bodes can spread contaminants in other locations.
The effects caused by soil contamination
Soil contamination can lead to land pollution, and affect the plants’ health to a significant extent. It can also damage living organisms present in the soils and humans as well. Soil contaminants can also penetrate the ground water and pollute the water ecosystems.
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