Consequences of Water Pollution
Pollutants can enter water supplies in many ways. Improper waste disposal, oil spills, agricultural run-off, and poor sewage treatment can release contaminants into water sources. When toxic materials pollute water systems, the potentially dangerous consequences affect everyone. Some of the most serious effects of water pollution include negative health effects, damage to ecosystems, and economic costs.
Increased Health Risks
Contaminated drinking water can cause serious medical conditions ranging from cholera and typhoid in areas with untreated water supplies to lead poisoning in systems with decaying pipes and infrastructure. Other waterborne diseases include tuberculosis, E. coli, Hepatitis A, and salmonella. These illnesses can require extensive medical treatment and result in lifelong disabilities. In some cases, waterborne diseases can be fatal, especially for children. Recent studies revealed excess nitrogen in drinking water ingested by infants and the development of stomach aches and rashes on individuals exposed to toxic algae.
Damage to Ecosystems
When contaminated water results in the destruction of aquatic plants and animals, entire ecosystems face extinction. Water pollution destroys habitats and compromises food sources for many species. Healthy ecosystems are vital to the entire food chain. When micro-organisms ingest lethal chemicals, including micro plastics and heavy metals, the pollution can spread up the food chain, ending ultimately with human consumers of both plants and animals. Farming ecosystems can be especially vulnerable to pollution given the key role of water in the irrigation of crops and breeding of livestock.
Pollutants discharged into ocean water after an oil tanker spill are some of the most damaging to the environment. Following a recent oil tanker spill, which released pollutants affecting over 16,000 miles of American coastline, over 8,000 animals were killed. Records indicate the 2010 Deep Horizon oil spill damaged over 80,000 birds, 6,000 turtles, and 25,000 marine animals. Mammal ingestion of oil often has serious long-term consequences on entire food chains.
Water pollution can result in steep economic costs for communities forced to remediate the problem. Remediating contaminated water supplies is extremely expensive and difficult in many cases. Replacing corroding pipes in urban plumbing systems can be a lengthy and costly project. Expenses associated with purifying drinking water, restocking fish hatcheries, and cleaning up algae blooms in recreational waterways can cost billions.
Compensation for Injuries Caused by Contaminated Water Supplies
An experienced environmental contamination lawyer can help injured individuals and municipalities hold companies liable for these adverse consequences.
Philadelphia Environmental Contamination Lawyers at Williams Cedar Fight on Behalf of Toxic Exposure Victims
If you or a loved one was exposed to contaminated water, the experienced Philadelphia environmental contamination lawyers at Williams Cedar are here to help. We proudly work with toxic exposure victims to help them obtain the maximum amount of compensation for their injuries, and help local governments recover the costs of dealing with the contamination of public water supplies. With offices conveniently located in Philadelphia and Haddonfield, New Jersey, our dedicated attorneys proudly serve individuals injured due to exposure to contaminated water throughout Pennsylvania, South Jersey, and nationwide. To schedule your free consultation today, call us at 215-557-0099 or contact us online.