Sources of Pollutants in Coastal Environment

Sources of Pollutants in Coastal Environment

In recent past, a lot of emphases is put in understanding the present, as well as the impact of materials that, enter the coastal. Some of this discharge have a great impact on the coastal ecosystem by inducing a biological effect that acts as an additional stressor to the marine ecosystem that is already affected by climate change, eutrophication, and over-fishing. In this paper, we shall review three pollutants, their characteristics, and their environmental impact.


Sewage effluent forms one of the major factors that contribute coastal environment pollution. Some of the sources of this waste sewage include discharge from hospitals, waste from manufacturing factories that release though coastal and ocean outlets for wastewater treatment plant combined with sewer overflows as well as rivers receiving the same effluents as they drain into the marine water. Some of the studies have attributed seasonal trends for concentration in marine and coastal waters. Therefore, there is need to identify which season that the coastal ecosystem is at significant risk of exposure to the waste level (National Research Council (U.S.), 1993, 78).

 Animal husbandry and horticulture

Promoting this activity along the rivers and coastal areas can contribute to loading chemical into the coastal water. Fertilizer that is put in the soil while planting can be carried away into the river and eventually into the coastal water. On the other hand, some chemicals are added to the animal feed that can later be drained into the waters. Some of this chemical contain nitrogen and phosphorus that when dumped into the sea can promote the growth of weeds in the water hence affecting habitat for other marine life in the coastal ecosystem (National Research Council (U.S.), 1993, 65).

Oil Spills

Oil spillage causes a devastating effect since it is toxic to the marine life. It occurs when tankers discharge leaking pipelines or oils disposed of into a sewer or ballast water from oil tanks. Oil spillage covers the surface of water thereby preventing sufficient entry of oxygen into the water hence the insufficient supply of oxygen can lead to the death of marine life. It can also reduce the light that reaches the planktons thereby reduction of photosynthesis that is needed by plants to make their food. This can have an immediate effect on the population of the marine (National Research Council (U.S.), 1993, 55).


National Research Council (U.S.). (2015). Managing wastewater in coastal urban areas. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

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