Water and Soil Pollution

Total Score=64


Definition

A harmful chemical or waste material that is accidentally or intentionally discharged into a water supply or the ground, resulting in an acute illness that requires definitive medical care or damaging the water supply or land so that it is no longer usable.

Background

Major pollution problems have been with us for years. An example to site is the Little Androscoggin River which is polluted by industrial wastes.

Water supply systems with surface sources are extremely vulnerable. An accident involving hazardous materials anywhere within a known Water Shed Impoundment Area or reservoir has the potential of causing a massive pollution problem. Maine has thousands of square miles of man-made and natural impoundment areas.

Water supply systems with surface sources are located in this town.

History

No major pollution problems have occurred in Poland. A major Ground Water pollution problem from a hazardous material dump has occurred in the neighboring community of Gray.

Time of Year

A water pollution event can occur at any time of the year.

Speed of Onset

Water and soil pollution can occur gradually or rapidly depending on the amount of chemical or waste being released.

Duration of Event

The duration of a water or soil pollution occurrence can last days to months.

Area of Impact

The effects of water and soil pollution will be felt over a large geographical area sometimes encompassing the water shed of several communities.

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Copyright 2002, Wayne Cotterly

Revised 10/21/02