Effects of Thermal Pollution . Thermal pollution is usually a product of dumping hot water into cooler water, but cold water in a warm body of water can also cause problems. Thermal pollution, although not frequently discussed, is a problem that is also persistent and harmful to nature. Warm water holds less oxygen than cool water. Thermal pollution is mainly associated with water. “Thermal shock” can kill off insects, fish, and amphibians. Thermal pollution has an extremely adverse effect on human health, and environment in general. The effects of thermal pollution are diverse, but in short, thermal pollution damages water ecosystems and reduces animal populations. Warmer water allows algae to flourish on the surface of the water, and over the long term, growing algae can decrease oxygen levels in the water. It disrupts the stability of the food chain and alters the balance of species composition. Artificial lakes are man-made water bodies that offer a possible alternative. Coral reef bleaching has also been observed when a power plant or factory is dumped into coastal water. Thermal pollution increases the metabolic rate of organisms as increasing enzyme activity occurs that causes organisms to consume more food than what is normally required if their environment were not changed. Reduction in dissolved Oxygen The pollutant from various industrial plants … The decrease in DO can create suffocation for plants and animals such as fish, amphibians and copepods, which may give rise to anaerobic conditions. Consistent high water discharge into natural water bodies favors the growth of … When oxygen levels are altered in the water, this can also degrade the quality and longevity of life in wildlife that lives underwater. The high temperature could prove fatal for aquatic biomes as it may give rise to anaerobic conditions. The reproduction of marine animals happens in a specific range of temperatures. If we want to promote the thriving environment that surrounds marine biology, then the attitude around thermal pollution needs to take a drastic turn. Heat is classified as a water pollutant when it is caused by heated industrial effluents or from anthropogenic (human) alterations of stream bank vegetation that increase the water system temperatures due to solar radiation. As part of Earth’s natural systems, water can absorb small amounts of thermal energy. However, the effects are still lasting today. All species including plant, algae or bacteria respond differently to the changes in the temperatures.. SEE ALSO Impact of Pollution on Plants Chemical pollution is an almost inevitable side effect of using water for cooling. Thermal Pollution. The more the exposure to sun’s heat, the higher the water temperatures become. Harmful Effects of Thermal Pollution So, how does thermal pollution affect the environment? This is because continued soil erosioncauses siltation and sedimentation thus raising the water levels which enlarges the surface area of the water exposed to sunlight. Industrially treated water can be recycled for domestic use or industrial heating that the problem of thermal pollution can be mitigated. The streets, parking lots and other covered spaces are heated up by the sun. Soil erosion is another major factor that causes thermal pollution. Thermal pollution: Thermal pollution is defined as the addition of excess of undesirable heat to water thereby making it harmful to man, animal or aquatic life. Solvents, fuel oil, and dissolved heavy metals end up in the lake or river where the cooling water gets dumped. Any kind of alterations (especially, increase in water temperature) can affect the reproductive system of those animals. Warmer water may be good for cold-blooded fish and amphibians, but only for a limited time. Key food sources are no longer adequate. The West Coast is still on fire. A reason for this Pollution is the utilization of water as a fluid agent ( gas or liquid) by the ability of plants and for industrial work. The effect of thermal pollution […] If the increase in heat is up to a certain limit, then the growth rate of fish increases and the yield of fish is increased near the powerhouse. It is similar to pouring a hot pitcher of water into a bathtub full of water that causes the water to jump a few degrees Fahrenheit. Lightening can also introduce a massive amount of heat into the oceans. Thermal pollution is showing adverse effects on the reproductive system of aquatic animals. A common cause of thermal pollution is the use of water as a coolant by power plants and industrial manufacturers. Many human and natural factors contribute to the problem of thermal pollution. One of many real problems that warm water may cause is faster metabolism, which means animals need more food. A significant temperature increase in the water can cause reproductive problems. Thermal pollution is defined as the addition of excess of undesirable heat to water thereby making it harmful to man, animal or aquatic life. When heated water returns to the river or ocean, the water temperature rises sharply. Some larger animals also benefit from the warmer water. When rain or storm water falls on them, it absorbs the heat and runs of into the drains. Deforestation eliminates shade, which exposes the water to sunlight. They then eject that water back into the natural resource, which changes the oxygen levels and can have disastrous effects on local ecosystems and communities. Hotter water may prove favorable for some species, while it could be lethal for other species. Deforestation is also the main cause of the higher concentrations of greenhouse gases, i.e. This article focuses on the sources of hot water and the consequences of introducing it into bodies of water. In deeper bodies of water, the injection of warm water can keep oxygen from dispersing into deep water, which is potentially good for bacteria but dangerous for aquatic animals. The sudden heating can kill off vulnerable organisms or drive them away. The local ecosystem may not be able to support a significant increase in food consumption. Diminishes the oxygen level in water bodies: Thermal pollution diminishes oxygen levels in water bodies because as the temperature of the water is raised, the dissolved oxygen escapes from the water body and is converted into atmospheric oxygen. In cities that are covered by concrete and other man made materials in most parts are also causing thermal pollution. The sudden rise or fall in the temperature of natural water bodies (ocean, lakes, river, and ponds) can cause imbalances in their molecular … But using the excess heat found in the water can help mitigate the effects of thermal pollution. The chemicals may have a range of toxic effects on plants and animals, from fatal poisoning to mutations and sterilization. Water as a Cooling Agent in Power, Manufacturing and Industrial Plants, Causes, Effects and Solutions to Ocean Pollution That Could Save Our Planet, 1. The following are the main effects of thermal pollution: ADVERTISEMENTS: (i) Changes in temperature have a disastrous effect on aquatic life, plants and animals. (And How to Keep Them Away), Do Deer Eat Peonies? This process can also wipe away streamside vegetation, which constantly depends on constant levels of oxygen and temperature. Effects of Thermal Pollution on Aquatic Life. The decreased oxygen can cause algae blooms that pose a threat to aquatic plants and animals. • Thermal Pollution is the harmful increase in water temperature in streams, rivers, lakes, or occasionally, coastal ocean waters. Water is an excellent, and free, cooling agent. (And Ways to Dispose of), Are Keys Recyclable? This changes the river’s environmental balance. Waste heat not only causes widespread climatological changes but also it can cause damage to aquatic and terrestrial life. (And 5 Ways to Dispose of), Is Junk Mail Recyclable? Those are some of the ecological effects due to thermal pollution. Some lean on the side of the negatives of this pollution on marine ecosystems and how it is detrimental to positive environmental practices. Streamside erosion may also remove vegetation cover along the streams further exposing the water to the sun’s thermal radiation. Urban runoff discharged to surface waters from paved surfaces like roads and parking lots can make the water warmer. Geothermal vents and hot springs introduce excess heat into bodies of water. Ocean pollution is also caused due to the toxins and chemicals entered into seawater through industrial & agricultural wastes. (And 6 Clever Ways to Reuse Old Keys), Can You Recycle Shampoo Bottles? A sudden thermal shock can result in mass killings of fish, insects, plants or amphibians. Coral bleaching happens when the coral organisms die. 72 United States Department of the Interior Federal Water Pollution Control Administration, Northwest Region 501 Pittock Block Portland, Oregon 97205 February 1970 Thermal Pollution: Effects, Causes and Control! The effects of thermal pollution on ecosystems, however, greatly outweigh the benefits that industries have by participating in the act. Various industrial processes use water as coolant and discharge hot water into the natural resource that affects the ecosystemand nearby communities. Thermal pollution is a debasement of water character by any procedure which alters the complete temperature of the water in a specific area. These chemical acts as heavy pollutants that cause thermal pollution. The more-adaptable organisms may unbalance the ecosystem simply by out-competing other organisms and by eating them or driving them to starvation. The warm water can also cause particular species of organisms to migrate to a suitable environment that would cater to its requirements for survival. Thermal pollution can change the biology of aquatic organisms in a variety of ways. The heat is eventually dissipated through evaporation. Birds may also be forced to leave in search of areas with more food. Plants and certain animals will be stuck in the area, which can lead to huge losses. Increased density of gases, viscosity, and solubility in water … The definition of thermal pollution, information on the causes, effects and possible solutions of thermal pollution. Retention ponds can be another source of thermal shock because the water bodies that are relatively small and shallow can absorb quite a bit of heat energy from the sun. An increase in the optimum water temperature by industrial process (steel fac­tories, electric power houses and atomic power plants) may be called as “Thermal Pollution.” Many industries generate their own power and use wa­ter to cool their generator. But due to the closure of the plants from time to time, which can be both controlled and unplanned, sudden change… However, the method alone is less desirable as well as inefficient in terms of air-water contact.