Causes and abatement of River Pollution

Increased population and industrialization has seen people and industries settle along river banks exposing the river water to a lot of wastes. Erosion rampant during the rainy season leads to a lot of soil being carried into the river water polluting it. Measures have been set up to reduce the rate of pollution by discouraging farming along river banks and setting up regulations for industrial wastes.


This essay scrutinizes research on Mississippi river pollution levels in terms of four main water pollution topics: sediment pollution, toxic pollution, nutrient pollution and bacterial contamination, and ways to abate it.

From a historical perspective, the Mississippi River pollution can be based on population growth along the boundaries of the river. The USA Geological Survey compiled a report in 1990 which provided comprehensive coverage of inorganic and organic toxins in the River (Quinta, 2009). Referring to the heavy metals, they stated that, as the valleys of the Mississippi River and its most of its tributaries got industrialized and settled, the metals dumped by human activities have affected the quality of the water of River Mississippi. Most of these metallic ions are necessary for proper metabolism among all living things yet highly toxic at high concentrations; some metals currently viewed as nonessential are toxic even at low concentrations."

Current agricultural practices are the main problems causing river pollution. Nutrient pollution from agricultural runoff is the main problem linked to pollution.

Bacterial pollution, especially the presence of Escherechia coli, which gets linked to both modern sewage treatment facilities and the runoff contaminated with livestock manure makes large stretches of the River a no swim zone too.

Issues like upland erosion, leaks containing chemical and spills, plus other types of water pollution have been quite prevalent throughout the basin and have got aggravated by sediment transport, creating environmental problems for wildlife, humans and the aquatic life. Several measures have been implemented with the intention of mitigating these pollution problems. Their success got successful initiated although, subsequent processes, such as aggravations and degradation, have been resultants of these revetments over time (Goel, 2009).


River pollution is a health hazard. Measures have to be taken to see to it that water pollution has been curbed. This calls for involvement of the respective governments to come up with strict regulations controlling industrial waste disposal into rivers. Others are creating embankments to prevent a lot of soil from flowing into rivers.


Sverdru & Parcel and Associates & Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District (Mo.)

Mississippi River pollution abatement project, Issue 3 (1970) Sverdrup & Parcel . and Associates.

Quinta, S (2009)The Mississippi: A Visual Biography University of Missouri Press.

Goel,P.K.(2009) Water Pollution-Causes, Effects and Control New Age International

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