Soil Pollution Prevention Methods

by | Oct 17, 2023 | Pollution, Soil Pollution

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Soil pollution poses significant threats to the environment, human health, and the overall sustainability of our planet. To control this, rapid soil pollution prevention actions must be implemented immediately. Let’s learn about important tactics and ideas for preventing soil pollution in this comprehensive guide.

Land Use Planning Methods to Prevent Soil Pollution

Many poor land use patterns like garbage disposal, drainage from residences, and industrial waste disposal practices contaminate the soil. The ecological system is harmed when the soil is polluted because plants and microbes may find it difficult to adjust to the soil’s altered chemical composition.

Some strategies for soil pollution prevention methods:

  • The existing registers for land management, agricultural practices, and urban and rural planning should be updated to reflect the most recent techniques for preventing and controlling soil contamination.
  • Controlling mining and industrial pollution carefully is the greatest strategy to reduce soil contamination.
  • It is also important to learn more about the baseline soil environment quality.
  • The practice of organic farming and the proper management of agricultural land.
  • Solid waste must be appropriately disposed of by being processed before being discharged into the environment.
  • The requirement to examine contaminated land areas for pollution.
  • The government should work to remediate and remove pollutants in order to enhance soil quality.
  • Research on the prevention and management of soil contamination should be pushed by bolstering technical research in order to assure sustainability.
  • Encourage all parties to evaluate situations objectively and accept responsibility.

Landfill

Any garbage that cannot be recycled or repurposed must be disposed of, and that location is typically a landfill. These are the locations intended to house trash. They are made to reduce the impact of garbage on the environment and human health.

Landfills are built to contain harmful waste; leaks may occasionally occur. As a result, landfills continue to pose a threat to both human health and the environment. Methane, a strong greenhouse gas that is emitted as a result of decaying waste, plays a significant role in global climate change.

People who reside close to the dump may experience respiratory issues as a result of the air pollution that escapes from it. Leachate from landfills can also introduce contaminants into surrounding groundwater supplies if there is a breach. According to studies, landfills are more frequently built next to communities of race and low-income districts. These people are more likely to encounter the health dangers linked to landfills as a result of this injustice.

A landfill is restricted and rehabbed as it reaches capacity so that it may be converted into green areas like parks and community grounds. After capping, they will be kept in good condition for up to 30 years.

Landfills often take many years to fill to capacity, depending on the kind and amount of garbage. A final layer of cover material, clay, and vegetation is then used to top a landfill. This top layer creates a barrier that keeps precipitation and odours apart. When the area is recovered, it will be planted according to its intended purpose, which might be light farming or enjoyment.

Read More: Why landfills are harmful to the environment?

Soil Pollution

Prevention of Contaminate Spreading

The first step in stopping soil contamination is at home, and every man has a duty to do so. The proper disposal of garbage and waste from households and industries needs to be checked. Its organization and government responsibilities are to have proper management of waste disposal in surrounding areas.

The food and agricultural industries are now entirely synthetic. Therefore, we must maintain the cleanliness of the food and agriculture businesses and stop the hazardous chemicals from those industries from seeping into the land.

The best location for humans to survive is on land. However, humans are ruining it in every way. We should keep the lands clean since soil pollution happens in the soil and results in land pollution through the soil. We shouldn’t scatter rubbish about.

Proper segregation of hazardous waste and non-recyclable waste needs to be mandatory. Recycling is a very effective method, but only 15-20% of waste generated are getting recycled.

Controlling soil pollution is essential since it affects water sources as well because it comes into touch with air and water. The land wastes are recklessly ending up in water bodies. Proper treatment of waste disposal is essential before dumping it into water bodies.

Physical Methods of Soil Pollution Prevention

Several things can be done to save soil both at an individual level and organizational level.

Numerous forestry and agricultural activities can be used to control soil erosion. Shifting cultivation can be replaced by contour cultivation and strip cropping. Terracing and the construction of diversion canals are options. Long-term soil erosion can be halted by reducing deforestation and using animal dung in place of chemical manures.

Proper Disposal of Undesired Materials

Human and animal waste that is too much offers a disposal issue. The method that is used the most frequently is open dumping. Solid trash is now disposed of via controlled tipping. The surface so created is utilized as a playing field or for dwellings.

Public Awareness

To inform individuals about the health risks posed by environmental education, both informal and official public awareness initiatives should be used.

Recycle

Recycling and reuse of waste are important for reducing soil contamination. Wastes, including paper, plastic, metal, glass, organics, petroleum products, and industrial effluents, should all be recycled and utilized again.

Ban on Toxic Chemicals

DDT, BHC, and other pesticides that are deadly to plants and animals should be banned. There should be a moratorium on nuclear explosions and irresponsible radioactive waste disposal.

Biological Methods of Soil Pollution Prevention

These days, biological soil remediation techniques are being created that are more inventive and sustainable. The biological technique effectively eliminates soil pollutants, lowers soil ecotoxicity, and restores soil health and related ecosystem services.

Phytoremediation

These methods can be used to clean up soil that has been contaminated with both inorganic and/or organic substances, but they are most frequently used on soil that has been contaminated with metals. Phytoextraction and Phyto stabilization are the two most used phytoremediation techniques.

Bioremediation

A sustainable solution for the remediation of polluted soils is bioremediation, or the employment of microorganisms (mostly bacteria and fungus) to clean up contaminated places. Although organic pollutants like mineral oils, pesticides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), petroleum hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), etc., can also be treated by bioremediation, their usage is more common for inorganic contaminants.

Vermiremediation

Vermiremediation has been defined as the practice of removing pollutants from soil using earthworms. Because earthworms are known to eat dirt and mix it in their bellies, they have the power to alter the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of soil, including nutrient availability, aeration, soil structure, and, subsequently, the activity of soil microbial communities.

Phytomanagement

This is an integrated site management strategy that aims to provide economic, social, and environmental advantages. In addition to mitigating the hazards brought on by the presence of toxins, photo management promotes the use of plants with phytoremediation capacity.

Chemical Methods of Soil Pollution Prevention

Soil can be treated with remediation procedures with the aim of decontaminating a site after testing to identify the kind and quantity of pollutants present. Contaminated soils are changed into safe soils with the use of chemicals like chemical oxidation.

Chemical Oxidation

Chemical oxidation is the main focus of chemical decontamination techniques, which include injecting reactive chemical oxidants into the soil and groundwater to quickly and completely destroy contaminants. In situ, chemical oxidation (ISCO) is a flexible method, especially for removing pollutants from hard-to-reach places like deep soils or soils under structures. Numerous organic pollutants, including TPH, BTEX, and PCBs, can be treated using the versatile treatment method known as chemical oxidation.

Soil Washing

By washing the soil with a liquid wash solution, soil washing removes dangerous pollutants. Fine-grained soils, such as silts and clays, are washed away during this process along with pollutants, which are more likely to attach to fine soils. As a result, cleansed coarse-grained soils, including sands and gravels, which may be safely re-used, are distinguished from polluted fines. Because washing soil does not eliminate or destroy pollutants, contaminated soil must be disposed of at a facility that is authorized to do so.

Composting

When soil is composted, it is combined with biomass, such as straw, hay, or corncobs, to provide the microorganisms with the ideal amount of water and air. When composting, the contaminated soil is located in treatment vessels and combined for aeration there.

Bio Slurping

The bioslurping method combines bioventing with vacuum-enhanced pumping to remediate soil and groundwater by indirectly supplying oxygen and promoting pollutant biodegradation.

Stabilization/Solidification

A series of remediation techniques known as “solidification and stabilization” aim to stop or delay the release of dangerous chemicals from wastes, including polluted silt, soil, and sludge. The pollutants are typically not destroyed by these techniques.

Solidification seals the waste in situ by encasing it in a solid block of material. In comparison to the trash, this block is less porous to water. Chemical reactions brought on by stabilization reduce the likelihood of pollutants leaching into the environment. To avoid exposing humans and wildlife to pollutants, especially metals and radioactive ones, they are frequently utilized in tandem.

By adding and combining various elements to the soil, soil stabilization is a technique for enhancing the soil’s qualities. Enhancing the shear strength characteristics of the soil and, hence, raising its bearing capacity is accomplished by soil stabilization.

Soil stabilization techniques are a corrective action that lowers the soil’s permeability and compressibility in earthen structures, increases its shear strength, and aids in preventing the settling of buildings.

Weeks or months may pass before solidification and stabilization are complete. The real-time will vary depending on a number of factors.

Thermal Methods of Soil Pollution Prevention

Heat is used to elevate subterranean temperatures and, hence, remove impurities from the soil and groundwater.

Thermal Desorption

A remediation technique for cleaning polluted soils is thermal desorption. The pollutants are vaporized using heat in this technique, which is limited to volatile contaminants. Most of them are organic wastes made up of hydrocarbons. Wastes with low boiling points are driven to become vapour by applying heat to contaminated soils; this vapour may then be collected and treated in an off-gas treatment unit. This eliminates any concerns about contamination when the soil is utilized again for other reasons. This benefit is frequently seen as beneficial since landfill space can typically be saved, and the soil can typically be restored without having to be transported elsewhere.

Smouldering

The biggest and longest-lasting flames on Earth have occurred naturally in peat and coal deposits, demonstrating the potential of smouldering in the clean-up. If the requirements for fuel and oxygen are satisfied, smouldering is a flameless combustion process that spreads a self-sustaining wave of exothermic combustion. The pollutants are transformed into heat, carbon dioxide, and water during combustion, negating the requirement for more fuel to finish the clean-up. The average temperature is, notwithstanding the geographical and temporal variations in the temperatures produced by smouldering.

Also Read: Future of Agriculture and Organic Farming

 

Author

  • Dr. Emily Greenfield

    Dr. Emily Greenfield is a highly accomplished environmentalist with over 30 years of experience in writing, reviewing, and publishing content on various environmental topics. Hailing from the United States, she has dedicated her career to raising awareness about environmental issues and promoting sustainable practices.

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