Soil contamination is the degradation of the soil belonging to some land due to the presence of large quantities of human-made chemicals. It is a huge contributor to land degradation and arises primarily due to human activity such as the excessive use of pesticides, the improper disposal of waste, and the improper management of industrial discharge. Soil contamination is often referred to as soil pollution. Examples of the substances that can be found in high concentrations in contaminated soils include lead, mercury, pesticides, industrial solvents, and the hydrocarbons that are obtained from the petroleum industry. Common causes of soil pollution include oil spills, microplastics, mining activities, acid rain, pesticides, fungicides, herbicides, fertilizers, nuclear waste, electronic waste, and landfills.
Soil contamination can have several adverse effects on human health. Contaminated soil can enter the human body via fine dust particles that are inhaled, by seeping into groundwater, or via direct physical contact. Soil pollution has been linked to the development of several congenital diseases in humans and has also been linked to cancer.
Deforestation refers to the removal of a large amount of forest land (and the trees growing in that land). It is also referred to as clearing or clearcutting. Deforestation can be caused by several reasons. For example, a large amount of forest land may be cleared in order to obtain timber, which can be used as a fuel. Deforestation can also occur when a large amount of land must be cleared for agriculture. In fact, forest lands are also cleared in order to create space for mulberry plantations, which are very useful in sericulture. Overpopulation can also be viewed as a cause of deforestation because the increase in demand brought on by overpopulation causes more forest land to be cut down in order to meet the supply requirements.
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