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From Wikipedia


A pollutant is a waste material that pollutes air, water or soil, and is the cause of pollution.

Three factors determine the severity of a pollutant: its chemical nature, its concentration and its persistence. Some pollutants are biodegradable and therefore will not persist in the environment in the long term. However the degradation products of some pollutants are themselves polluting such as the products DDE and DDD produced from degradation of DDT

Types of pollutants

Stock pollutants

Pollutants that the environment has little or no absorptive capacity are called stock pollutants (e.g. persistent synthetic chemicals, non-biodegradable plastics, and heavy metals). Stock pollutants accumulate in the environment over time. The damage they cause increases as more pollutant is emitted, and persists as the pollutant accumulates. Stock pollutants can create a burden for future generations by passing on damage that persists well after the benefits received from incurring that damage have been forgotten.

Fund pollutants

Fund pollutants are those for which the environment has some absorptive capacity. Fund pollutants do not cause damage to the environment unless the emission rate exceeds the receiving environment's absorptive capacity (e.g. carbon dioxide, which is absorbed by plants and oceans). Fund pollutants are not destroyed, but rather converted into less harmful substances, or diluted/dispersed to non-harmful concentrations.

Notable pollutants

Notable pollutants include the following groups:

Zones of influence

Pollutants can also be defined by their zones of influence, both horizontally and vertically.

Horizontal zone

The horizontal zone refers to the area that is damaged by a pollutant. Local pollutants cause damage near the emission source. Regional pollutants cause damage further from the emission source.

Vertical zone

The vertical zone is referred to whether the damage is ground-level or atmospheric. Surface pollutants cause damage by concentrations of the pollutant accumulating near the Earth's surface Global pollutants cause damage by concentrations in the atmosphere



Pollutants can cross international borders and therefore international regulations are needed for their control. The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants, which entered into force in 2004, is an international legally binding agreement for the control of persistent organic pollutants. Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers (PRTR) are systems to collect and disseminate information on environmental releases and transfers of toxic chemicals from industrial and other facilities.

European Union

The European Pollutant Emission Register is a type of PRTR providing access to information on the annual emissions of industrial facilities in the Member States of the European Union, as well as Norway.

United States

Clean Air Act standards. Under the Clean Air Act, the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) are standards developed for outdoor air quality. The National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants are emission standards that are set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which are not covered by the NAAQS.

Clean Water Act standards. Under the Clean Water Act, EPA promulgated national standards for municipal sewage treatment plants, also called publicly owned treatment works, in the Secondary Treatment Regulation. National standards for industrial dischargers are calledEffluent guidelines(for existing sources) andNew Source Performance Standards, and currently cover over 50 industrial categories. In addition, the Act requires states to publish water quality standards for individual water bodies to provide additional protection where the national standards are insufficient.

RCRA standards. The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulates the management, transport and disposal of municipal solid waste, hazardous waste and <

Erosion control

Erosion control is the practice of preventing or controlling wind or water erosion in agriculture, land development and construction. Effective erosion controls are important techniques in preventing water pollution and soil loss.


Erosion controls are used in natural areas, agricultural settings or urban environments. In urban areas erosion controls are often part of stormwater runoff management programs required by local governments. The controls often involve the creation of a physical barrier, such as vegetation or rock, to absorb some of the energy of the wind or water that is causing the erosion. On construction sites they are often implemented in conjunction with sediment controls such as sediment basins and silt fences.


Examples of erosion control methods include:

Mathematical modeling

Since the 1920s and 1930s scientists have been creating mathematical models for understanding the mechanisms of soil erosion and resulting sediment surface runoff, including an early paper by Albert Einstein applying Baer's law. These models have addressed both gully and sheet erosion. Earliest models were a simple set of linked equations which could be employed by manual calculation. By the 1970s the models had expanded to complex computer models addressing nonpoint source pollution with thousands of lines of computer code. The more complex models were able to address nuances in micrometerology, soil particle size distributions and micro-terrain variation.

From Yahoo Answers


Answers:The environmental laws are enacted by Congress and enforced by the US EPA and the state environmental agencies. Most of the on- the- ground work of enforcement is done by staff at the state agencies who monitor the required reports from the industries and do periodic inspections. EPA oversees the state agencies and makes sure they are doing the job required by federal regulation. Sometimes EPA will go directly to the industries and do inspections and evaluations, especially in the cases where a state refuses to enforce the program.


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Question:Can you tell me some tehcnology to control or reduce air pollution?

Answers:There are lots of technologies for reducing air pollution, possibly hundreds of them. It really depends on what sort of air pollution you are looking to control. In an enclosed space, such as a car, house, hotel, factory, concert hall, you may need to use 'odour suppression technology', 'filtration technology', and 'climate control technology'. Each of these technologies has lots of subdivisions. In open spaces 'air pollution' generally refers to pollution generated by mankind's occupation of the planet, and in particular pollution which is contributing to 'Global Warming'. Air pollution may by controlled with numerous technologies, for example :- Animal husbandry technology may reduce the effects of livestock breeding. Oxidation technology (catalytic converters on car exhausts, or thermal oxidisers in industrial exhaust stacks) may reduce the effects of unburned hydrocarbons. Renewable energy technology (windmills, hydroelectric power, wave technology etc) may reduce the amount on carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere. Power generation technology may improve the efficiency of how we utilise energy. The list is endless, but I hope this helps.

Question:da i got an assignment over control of air pollution. i have to give 5 points. i wrote over catalytic converter, electrostatic precipitator and cyclone dust collector. please kindly give two popular or unpopular methods for controls with details or links. this is 2nd semester b.tech assignment in chemistry

Answers:tulsi or basil plant helps in controlling air pollution,it acts as air purifier.it is a common plant

From Youtube

Soil Pollution :Soil pollution

Soil Pollution :This video is about soil pollution and the effect of it. . The world must change. The choice is in your hands!! enjoy and plz comment =) !