Background (Key Point) Waterways such as rivers, lakes and estuaries are important to humans and wildlife alike. – Used for drinking, transportation, recreation and a habitat for many species. – Almost 40%of our nation’s rivers, lakes and estuaries are not fishable, swimmable, or potable because of pollution. – Two sources for pollutants to enter the waterways: POINT and NON-POINT
Point Source Pollution (Key Point) Pollution that flows from one identifiable source such as a discharge pipe from a factory, roadway, or a leaking underground storage tank – Hazardous and toxic materials from manufacturing is released directly into the river/stream Examples: Oil, Gasoline, Toxins and poisons, arsenic, lead, mercury. This can lead to an increase in heated water that causes the dissolved oxygen to decrease, therefore killing the fish (Clean Water Act of 1972)
Clean Water Act of 1972 (Key Point) The Clean Water Act (CWA) is the primary federal law in the United States governing water pollution.  Passed in 1972, the act established the goals of eliminating releases of high amounts of toxic substances into water, eliminating additional water pollution by 1985, and ensuring that surface waters would meet standards necessary for human sports and recreation by 1983. federal lawUnited States water pollution toxic substancessurface waters
Non-Point Source Pollution (Key Point) Pollution that is collected by rain falling over a large watershed (area that catches all precipitation and surface runoff) to a nearby stream or lake or by percolating (process of a liquid moving through a substance that is porous) into the groundwater. “ A harder problem to solve” Runoff from urban areas is the largest source of impairments to the nation’s waterways.
Examples Agriculture Forestry Grazing Septic systems » Recreational boating Urban runoff Construction
Changing the landscape changes the amount of surface runoff in a watershed. Pesticides (bug killers) and herbicides (weed killer) washes into lakes and rivers Crop fields, especially after harvest, can wash soil and sediments Animal waste can be harmful and infested with bacteria. Without trees and plants in a field to hold the soil in place, large pieces of sediment runoff into streams/lakes Construction sites create a hazard for wastes to enter
(Key Point)Water Pollution can be categorized into four types:
Chemical The introduction of toxic substances into an ecosystem – Acidic precipitation – Pesticide contamination
Thermal Varying temperatures above or below the normal condition – Power plant turbine heated water
Organic Oversuppling an ecosystem with nutrients – Fertilizer inflow
Ecological Stresses ordinarily created by natural processes – Adding a substance that is not naturally occuring – Increasing the amount or intensity of a naturally occurring substance – Altering the level or concentration of biological or physical components of an ecosystem ** Typically created naturally, although humans can cause it**
Examples: Kathryn throws her M&M wrapper out the car window? A car emits gasoline exhaust? Juan’s dad dumps unused paint into the drain that flows into the water system? All of the farmers in Minnesota use GrowQuick, a chemical fertilizer?
Examples: A marshland is flooded by saltwater? Ecological A car emits gasoline exhaust? Chemical Juan’s dad dumps unused paint into the drain that flows into the water system? Chemical All of the farmers in Minnesota use GrowQuick, a chemical fertilizer? Organic or Chemical
What can you do to help out? Clean up after your pets and throw their waste in a garbage can. Don’t buy too many fertilizers or insecticides to make your lawn look pretty. Just buy what you need and don’t dump the rest—dispose of it properly at a waste center. Drive your car as little as possible. Recycle used oil and antifreeze by taking them to service stations and other recycling centers. Never put used oil or other chemicals down storm drains or in drainage ditches—One quart of oil can contaminate up to two million gallons of drinking water!
Don’t hose down your driveway—That just makes all of the oil and grease run off into storm drains. You can clean your driveway with a broom if you want to. Put all of your trash into the trash can! Wash your car on the grass so the soapy water soaks into the ground.