Lesson 17: Soil pollution


The soil is resource for which there is no substitute environment historian “Donald Worster” reminds us that fertilizers are not a substitute for fertile soil. Climate and time are also important in the development of soils. In extremely dry or cold climates soils develop very slowly, while in humid and warm climates soils develop more rapidly under ideal climatic conditions, soft parent material may develop into 1cm of soil within 15 years. Under poor climatic conditions, a hard parent material may require hundreds of years to develop into soil.


The soil is a thin covering over the land consisting of a mixture of minerals, organic material, living organisms, air and water that together support the growth of a plant life. Several factors contributed to the formation of soil from the parent material.

Soil pollution is defined as the build-up in soil of persistent toxic compounds, chemicals, salts, radioactive materials, or disease causing agents, which have adverse effects on plant growth and animal health.


Last modified: Monday, 2 January 2012, 6:53 AM