What Is This Module About?
Water is one of the most important and most widely used substances on earth.
Seventy percent (70%) of the earth’s surface is covered with water, abundant enough
to supply the needs of men, animals and plants alike. Yet, despite such an abundance,
we still experience water shortage.
Why do we experience water shortage? Water shortage is only one of the many
consequences of water pollution — one of the major environmental problems we are
facing today. In fact, water pollution and its harmful effects on human beings and
their environment have become a great concern of societies all over the world. We
hear about the bad conditions of our rivers and lakes, and even the seas surrounding
our coastlines. We hear news stories about whales being rescued by environmental
groups because their habitat has been contaminated with oil spills. Closer to home, we
are not even sure if the water that we are drinking is safe and clean. What is happening
to our water resources?
In this module, we will introduce to you all types of water pollution. You will
know how the water in rivers become polluted. You will be able to identify the
harmful effects of water pollution on your health, household, environment and
economy. Safety tips will likewise be taught to you so that you can readily protect
your health from toxic chemicals accidentally spilled in various bodies of water. This
module will also discuss the problem of water shortage. To help solve this problem,
you have to learn how to conserve and protect water resources.
The module is divided into two lessons:
Lesson 1 — Why Is Water Pollution Harmful?
Lesson 2 — What Can You Do to Help Fight Water Pollution?
What Will You Learn From This Module?
After studying this module, you should be able to:
. describe problems related to water pollution;
. identify the causes and harmful effects of water pollution on our health,
environment, domestic life and economy;
. discuss the government’s efforts in solving the problem of water pollution;
and
. prepare a plan of action for possible solutions to the problem of water
pollution in the community.
1
Let’s See What You Already Know
Write the letter of the correct answer on the line before each number.
1. These are very small organisms that grow rapidly in rivers. They use up
the oxygen that fish and water plants need to survive.
a. algae
b. bacteria
c. germs
d. viruses
2. During the rainy season, rainwater cleanses the chemicals in the air and
returns them to the ground and to bodies of water. This phenomenon is
known as .
a. condensation
b. rain forest
c. acid rain
d. precipitation
3. Which of the following is a nonhazardous substance used for making
household cleaning solutions?
a. solvent
b. household ammonia
c. thinner
d. rust remover
4. How should you dispose of hazardous household chemicals?
a. take them to the nearest hazardous waste collection center
b. flush them into your toilet bowl
c. pour them into your kitchen drain
d. throw them into your regular garbage can
2
5. In nonpoint source pollution, rainfalls pick up and carry
unwanted chemicals and pollutants through storm drains to
surface waters. Which of the following is not an example
of nonpoint source pollution?
a. washing clothes using detergents that are high in phosphate
b. acid rain
c. pouring toxic chemicals into your bathroom drain
d. oil spills and the burning of toxic substances at seas
6. What is the chemical contaminant that poses an immediate threat to
young children? High-level contamination can result in a condition
known as the “Blue Baby Syndrome.”
a. radon
b. sulfur
c. nitrate
d. phosphate
7. What does DENR Administrative Order No. 34 cover?
a. Revised Water Usage and Classifications
b. Revised Effluent Regulations of 1990
c. Philippine Clean Water Act
d. Water Regulatory Classifications
8. An oil spill is an example of what type of water pollution?
a. thermal pollution
b. air-based pollution
c. illegal dumping and marine transport pollution
d. solid waste
9. What chemical contaminant is produced in certain types of
rocks and is spilled into the groundwater in the process of erosion?
a. phosphate
b. sulfur
c. nitrate
d. radon
3
_10. Which of the following is an illness that is caused by water
pollution?
a. dysentery
b. cancer
c. Blue Baby Syndrome
d. all of the above
Well, how was it? Do you think you fared well? Compare your answers with
those in the Answer Key on page 31.
If all your answers are correct, very good! This shows that you already know
much about the topic. You may still study the module to review what you already
know. Who knows, you might learn a few more new things as well.
If you got a low score, don’t feel bad. This only shows that this module is for
you. It will help you understand important concepts that you can apply in your daily
life. If you study this module carefully, you will learn the answers to all the items in
the test and a lot more! Are you ready?
You may now proceed to the next page to begin Lesson 1.
4
LESSON 1
Why Is Water Pollution Harmful?
This lesson will enable you to identify problems caused by water pollution.
Through this module, you will be able to enumerate the harmful practices or activities
of humans that pollute our water resources.
Below are some major causes of water pollution that damage our marine
resources and deplete our water supply. These will be discussed in this lesson.
. Land-based pollution
. Air-based pollution
. Dumping and marine transport pollution
At the end of this lesson, you will also learn the harmful effects of water
pollution on our health, domestic life, environment and economy.
Letfs Study and Analyze
A. Answer the questions below. Write your answers in the space provided after
each question.
1. Do you have a continuous supply of
running water in your home? Or
does water come only at certain
hours in your community?

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2. Have you noticed that bottles
of mineral water are sold
almost everywhere— in the
streets, schools and public
places? Have you also
noticed the growing business
of water purification? What
does this scenario tell us?
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3. Are you drinking clean and safe water? Is it safe to drink water from
your faucet? How do you know that your water is safe or not?




4. How does our drinking water become contaminated?



5. Why do we experience water shortage?



To check your answers, read on.
6
Did you know that
97% of the earth’s water is
salt water? Less than 3%
is fresh water and twothirds
of that fresh water is
ice.
Let’s Learn
Nowadays, water becomes available only at certain hours in many homes. This is
why many people store up water in big tanks, pails and drums for their daily use. We
experience water shortage because we fail to conserve and use our water resources
properly. We dump our garbage in and nearby streams, rivers and canals. These
practices deplete our water supply and pollute our water sources.
We often see vendors selling mineral water in the streets and water purifiers
displayed in various stores. It is because the water we drink from our faucets is more
likely to be contaminated with harmful chemicals. In what way? Chemicals and
bacteria line up in our water pipe. And so, we can not quite be certain how safe our
water resource is. According to the report of the US Environmental Protection
Agency, hundreds of tap water resources have failed to meet minimum drinking water
standards. Tap water may reasonably be expected to contain small amounts of
contaminants. These do not necessarily pose a health risk. However, the presence of
lead, pesticides or asbestos in tap water can be very dangerous to our health.
Drinking water is unsafe when groundwater becomes infected with
microbiological and chemical contaminants. These include pesticides, human and
animal wastes, and chemicals carried to surface waters by rainfalls and floods.
Do you know that our problems concerning unsafe drinking water and water
shortage are all caused by water pollution? You will find out later how harmful water
pollution is.
7
After Before
Let’s Study and Analyze
Study and describe the two illustrations below.
Picture 1 Picture 2
Picture 1
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Picture 2
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Compare your answers with those in the Answer Key on page 32.
The first picture shows a pollution-free environment. The water is crystal clear
and there is an abundance of fish and plants in the river.
Meanwhile, the second picture illustrates how dirty this river has become. The
river is contaminated with industrial wastes, and because of this, fish and water plants
are dying. It is sad to learn that many of our rivers, lakes and seas are deteriorating
like this.
8
Let’s Think About This
Why is Captain River dying in the hospital?
1. Are there any bodies of water in your community? If there are none, have
you seen bodies of water elsewhere? Describe them and tell if they are
polluted or not.
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2. Describe activities that contribute to water pollution in your community.
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3. Can you cite other human activities/practices that cause water pollution?
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Compare your answers with those in the Answer Key on pages 32–33.
9
Let’s Read
Most of our rivers and seas have become polluted. The waters that used to be
clear and pure have become unclean. Because of the lack of oxygen, many schools of
fish and water plants die.
Have you ever wondered why the waters in our rivers, seas, lakes, streams and
oceans have become polluted? Water pollution results when too much wastes and
garbage are thrown into rivers and other bodies of water. Humans are the greatest
contributors to water pollution. Study the illustrations below and see how some
human practices harm our water resources.
Dumping of toxic wastes
into rivers and streams by
industrial plants
Dumping of garbage in
canals and in nearby
bodies of water
10
Disposal of hot water by
electrical plants to different
bodies of water causing thermal
pollution.
Accidental spillage of millions
of tons of oil into the oceans
(oil spills).
Poor sewage disposal.
11
Use of detergents containing chemicals
such as phosphate. This chemical
contributes to the rapid growth of
algae. These tiny organisms live on
phosphate and use all the oxygen in the
rivers. The massive reproduction of
these algae will eventually lead to the
death of our rivers.
Pouring toxic residue into kitchen and
bathroom drains
Runoffs such as excess fertilizer,
insecticides from agricultural lands,
and animals wastes contaminate our
rivers and underground sources of
drinking water.
At this point, we have identified the causes of water pollution and enumerated
some human activities or practices that contribute to the destruction and depletion of
our water resources. On the following pages, we will classify these practices
according to three (3) major pollutant sources.
12
Let’s Learn
Three Major Pollutant Sources
1. Dumping and Marine Transport Pollution
Many industrial plants dump their
toxic wastes into rivers and streams.
Some industrial plants dispose of their
radioactive wastes from ships and other
man-made structures by throwing these
into the seas. Toxic wastes are burned in
the seas and some ships illegally wash
their empty tanks here. Millions of tons
of oil are spilled into the oceans every
year.
2. Air-Based Pollution
One example of air-based water
pollution is the acid rain
phenomenon. During the rainy season,
rainwater washes away the chemicals in
the air and brings them to the ground
and into bodies of water. This is
harmful to the schools of fish and other
animals living in the seas and oceans.
For more information on acid rain, you
can read the NFE A&E module entitled
Wanted: Clean and Fresh Air.
3. Land-Based Pollution
Urban development contributes to
water pollution. When large groups of
people migrate to urban areas to seek
better employment opportunities, these
areas become overpopulated. Because
of overpopulation and the establishment
of industrial plants and factories in
these areas, the sources of drinking
water become filthy and contaminated.
13
Factories, farms, houses and industries also contribute to water pollution.
People often dump garbage, chemicals and animal wastes into canals and nearby
bodies of water. Wastes, acids from factories and pesticides are also dumped in the
waters. These are poisonous to the plants and animals there. These are a few examples
of the ill practices brought about by urban development which contribute to water
pollution.
Sixty percent (60%) of the wastes and garbage that pollute the rivers and clog
canal systems comes from domestic households. Forty percent (40%) comes from
factories and industrial plants.
Other types of land-based pollution are thermal pollution and nonpoint source
pollution.
Thermal pollution is another
type of water pollution. It takes place
when electric plants throw away clean
hot water into different bodies of
water. This endangers the life forms
in these bodies of water because hot
water reduces oxygen.
Nonpoint source pollution is the leading cause of the drop in the quality of our
waters. Many people do not realize that while remaining in their respective homes,
they too, contribute to water pollution. When chemicals and other pollutants are not
disposed of properly in their homes, these are picked up and carried to surface waters
through drains. We are not aware that the chemical wastes we pour into our kitchen
and bathroom drains end up in the rivers, which are sources of our drinking water.
Animal wastes and fertilizers also contaminate water. In areas where sanitation is
neglected, the wastes from comfort rooms (including human wastes) and kitchens are
likely to infect our drinking water. The water becomes contaminated with bacteria and
can cause diseases such as cholera and dysentery.
14
Let’s Review
Based on what you have just read, answer the questions below.
1. How does water become polluted? Enumerate at least ten possible causes of
water pollution.
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2. Why is thermal pollution harmful to our water resources?
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3. What is nonpoint source pollution? Why is it considered the leading source
of water pollution?
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Compare your answers with those in the Answer Key on pages 33–34. Did you
get all the answers right?
Let’s Try This
What have you learned at this point? We have discussed that water pollution is a
result of human activity. It is caused by too much waste and garbage thrown into
bodies of water. Water becomes contaminated with foreign substances such as
chemicals, industrial wastes and sewage.
Having learned the causes of water pollution, do you know anything about its
harmful effects? Why is water pollution harmful to our health and environment? How
does it affect our domestic life? Does water pollution also affect our economy?
How?
Supply the table on the following page with your own ideas regarding the effects
of water pollution on our health, households, environment and economy.
15
Domestic Life/
Household
Environment
Health
Economy
Let’s Read
Indeed, water performs an important role in our lives.
Every morning, we use water for bathing and other morning cleaning activities.
We also use water to wash our clothes and dishes. We use water when we cook our
meals and clean our homes.
To check your answers, continue reading.
Harmful Effects of Water Pollution
What will happen if our water supply is inadequate for our daily
use?
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What will happen to our beaches, marine plants and fish if our
rivers and seas are polluted?

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What are the sicknesses/illnesses caused by contaminated water?
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What will happen to our economy if water pollution remains a
threat?

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16
What will happen to us if we wake up one
morning and find out that there is no water in our
watersheds? Will we survive? What will we
drink instead? From these, we can see the
consequences of water pollution in our everyday
lives.
We also see the effects of water pollution
on the aquatic environment. We hear warnings
not to eat clams because of red tide poisoning.
We hear from the media how environmental
groups help save endangered animals such as
seals, whales and sea birds from oil spills.
Birds living near the sea are endangered when
oil gets into their feathers, preventing them
from swimming or flying. Can you recall
when our beaches like Boracay were closed
to the public because of water contamination?
Fish and marine plants die when
chemicals or runoffs increase the phosphorus
and nitrogen levels in lakes and seas. The
foul-smelling algae and other microscopic
organisms that grow rapidly use too much
oxygen. As a result, the fish and other
animals die from lack of oxygen. The wildlife
that feed on these animals are, in turn, also
affected.
Human health can also be harmed.
According to the World Health Organization
(WHO), five million people all over the world
die each year because of the intake of
contaminated water. If we drink water
contaminated with toxins, serious health
problems like cancer, birth defects and
gastrointestinal diseases such as typhoid and
hepatitis can occur. Small amounts of
contaminants may cause nausea, lung
irritation, skin rashes, diarrhea, vomiting and
dizziness. Excessive levels of nitrate in
drinking water is fatal to babies and young
children. This can result to a condition known
as the “Blue Baby Syndrome,” which can even
cause death. Radon is a contaminant that is
17
What would happen if we don’t have
enough water?
Water pollution puts the lives of sea birds
and other aquatic animals at risk.
Small amounts of contaminants may
cause diarrhea, vomiting and dizziness.
produced in certain types of rocks
and when these rocks erode, the
chemical mixes with groundwater.
Poor water quality and water
shortage have a negative effect on
the economy, specifically when
agricultural production decreases.
Because of inadequate water
supply for irrigating crops in the
fields, some farms are forced to
close down. Moreover, when
workers in the urban areas get sick
because of contaminated water,
work productivity slows down.
These affect our industries and,
consequently, our economy.
To sum up, water pollution has several undesirable or harmful effects. These are:
. destruction of marine life;
. death of marine plants and fish;
. red tide;
. decline of tourism industry;
. decline of fishing industry;
. decrease in agricultural production;
. closing down of agricultural farms because of inadequate water supply;
. minor health problems like nausea, lung irritation, skin rashes, diarrhea,
vomiting, dizziness, etc.; and
. serious health problems such as cancer, birth defects and gastro-intestinal
diseases.
Some farms are forced to close down due to water
shortage.
18
Let’s See What You Have Learned
Write the correct answers in the blanks.
_ 1. What happens when too much wastes and garbage are
thrown into bodies of water?
_ 2. What microorganisms reproduce so rapidly that they use
_ 3.
_4.
_5.
_6.
_7.
_8.
_9.
10
_11.
_12. Give five (5) household uses of water.
_13.
_14.
_15. What kind of water pollution is caused by accidents at
Compare your answers with those in the Answer Key on pages 34–35.
up all the oxygen in the water, causing plants and fish to
die because of lack of oxygen?
Give five (5) sicknesses or illnesses
caused by water pollution.
What does WHO stand for?
How many millions of people die each year due to the
intake of contaminated water?
sea involving oil tankers?
Let’s Talk About This
Discuss among your friends, co-workers, co-learners, family members and
Instuctional Manager the condition of the Pasig River or any polluted river within or
near your locality. Identify the reasons for its deterioration. Also discuss among
yourselves the harmful effects of polluted water on the health, households,
environment and economy of nearby communities.
19
Letfs Remember
In this lesson, you learned that:
. Water pollution is a result of human activity. Human beings are the greatest
contributors to the worsening situation of water pollution.
. Water pollution is a result of too much waste and garbage thrown into bodies
of water.
. Water pollution is harmful to our health, households, environment and
economy.
20
LESSON 2
What Can You Do to Help
Fight Water Pollution?
This lesson will teach you how to conserve water and minimize water pollution.
Safety tips will also be discussed so that you can readily protect your health from
toxic chemicals that have contaminated various bodies of water. This lesson will also
keep you informed about the government’s existing programs on water pollution.
Let’s Study and Analyze
What is wrong with the picture below?
Encircle five bad practices that contribute to water pollution.
21
Were you able to spot them all? Write them down on the lines below. Also
explain why you consider them bad practices.
1. _
_
2. _
_
3. _
_
4. _
_
5. _
_
How many were you able to spot? Were you able to locate the man pouring used
motor oil down the ground drainage? Why is this not a good practice? It is because
chemicals like motor oil can damage water plants and kill fish when they reach the
lakes and streams.
Similarly, the oil that leaks from the car, as shown in the picture, is washed into
the ground drainage when it rains. It is best that you check cars and vehicles for leaks
and drips to prevent further pollution of our rivers and streams.
Did you also notice that the sprinklers are not properly positioned? They should
have been placed on the lawn and not on the sidewalk to save water. Watering the lawn
or garden should be done early in the morning to lessen evaporation. This allows
more water to sink in the soil and reach the plants’ roots.
Another bad practice is the use of fertilizers and pesticides by the woman tending
her plants. The use of fertilizers and pesticides contribute to water pollution.
Fertilizers contain large amounts of nitrogen and phosphorous that can be washed into
lakes and streams. Also, pesticides contain materials that are harmful to fish, plants
and humans. When it rains, these toxic materials can be swept into the ground
drainage, which heads directly to streams and rivers.
Lastly, were you able to spot the boy throwing garbage on the street? Remember
that plastic bags, candy wrappers and plastic cups littering the streets eventually drift
to the sea. Marine animals might mistake the plastics for food and they may die from
eating these.
Were you able to explain why the practices you have spotted are not considered
good practices? What have you learned about protecting and conserving our water
resources? Can you name some hazardous products or chemicals used in the house
that pollute our water resources?
22
Let’s Learn
The conservation and protection of our water resources should always be a shared
responsibility. As caretakers of our environment, each and everyone of us should do
his/her part in protecting and conserving our water resources. We should bear in mind
that conservation is as yet the most effective way of preserving our water resources.
There are a number of ways we can help our government reduce water pollution.
We can teach ourselves, our families and neighbors how to save water. We can educate
them about the dangers of household chemicals that may contaminate our drinking
water. Also, we can involve ourselves in environmental protection activities (e.g.,
watershed-protection projects) and attend seminars on toxic waste management
sponsored by environmental organizations or our government. Such seminars will
teach us the proper handling or disposal of excess paints, thinners, pesticides, used oil
and other toxic materials.
On the following pages are some valuable tips on how to save water and at the
same time, keep it free from contamination.
Let’s Try This
Look for ten (10) toxic materials that can be found in your home and which
contribute to the pollution of rivers, lakes and other bodies of natural water. These
materials are hidden in the puzzle below. Can you find and encircle them?
Y K E S A E R G F E R T I L I Z E R
A U S T T U B E T T E R A G I C X O
S R E V O ME R T S U R S U P S A N
D T U L I P S A O A K P E C S D WT
U D L E M P O L I S H E R S A R E L
N O G S A L V D K C E A N E H A U D
O L I S R E H C A E L B A R A E N O
I P A I N T S F R U I S O M N V WN
P E S T I C I D E S T K B G A R L G
To know if you encircled the right items, check your answers using the Answer
Key on page 35.
23
Household cleaning
time.
Garden and lawn
Ways to Save Water
Bathing and personal care
1. Tightly turn faucets off to avoid leaks.
2. When brushing your teeth, don’t let the
water run continuously.
3. Lessen the rate of water flow when
washing or using the faucet.
Laundry
1. Wash clothes only when they are dirty.
2. Wash clothes in bulk, not one piece or a few pieces at a time.
Cooking
1. Use tight-fitting covers on pans to minimize the evaporation of water.
2. Use as little water as possible when cooking food.
3. Use a small pan of water to peel or clean vegetables rather than letting the
water run over them continuously.
1. Use a broom instead of a hose when cleaning your driveway and garage
floor.
2. Wash your car on the grass so that
the grass can be watered at the same
3. When washing dishes, use a pan of
soapy water for washing and another
pan of hot water for rinsing.
4. Wipe rather than rinse dishes if they
are not so dirty.
1. Water your lawn or garden early in the morning or at night to lessen or
minimize evaporation, so that more water will sink in the plants’ roots.
2. Pull out weeds from your garden or lawn.
3. Check hoses and faucets frequently for leaks.
4. Cut grass to a length of three inches.
24
DID YOU KNOWTHAT...
...a leaking faucet is a common
household water waster? A faucet that
leaks one drop per second can waste
2,400 gallons per year.
...about 3.5 to 5 gallons of water is used
per flush of the toilet. You can lessen this
if you place a bottle filled with water and
pebbles inside your toilet tank. This adds
volume to the water, thus lessening the
amount needed to fill up the toilet tank.
Source: United Environmental Protection Agency
Now study the following tips which you can follow to help protect our water
resources.
Ways to Protect Water From Contamination
1. Be aware that common chemicals used around the house such as oven and
toilet cleaners, bleaches, paints, solvents, polishers and glues, are toxic. Use
nontoxic substitutes like vinegar, pure soap, baking soda, borax and
household ammonia instead.
Try this recipe for an all-purpose cleaner.
.
.
.
1 gallon hot water
. cup household ammonia
. cup vinegar
1 tablespoon baking soda .
2. Limit the use of hazardous chemicals. Buy chemicals that you think would
be used immediately. Do not store or throw away the excess chemicals
carelessly.
25
3. Properly dispose of household toxic wastes. Do not pour hazardous
chemicals down the drain or on the ground. The soil cannot purify these
chemicals. Likewise, do not dispose of them in regular household garbage
cans.
4. Clean household drains with hot water mixed with ½ cup of baking soda.
5. Use low-phosphate or phosphate-free detergents. These chemicals are eaten
by tiny organisms called algae. These algae multiply rapidly in rivers and use
up all the oxygen that is also needed by fish and marine plants. This will
eventually contribute to the death of rivers.
6. Clean up spilled brake fluid, oil and grease. Do not pour them into the
ground drainage where they will eventually reach nearby lakes and rivers.
7. Place litter, including cigarette butts, in trash cans. Never throw garbage on
the streets because, when it rains, it can flow into the ground drainage.
8. Animal wastes contain bacteria and viruses. These wastes should be properly
disposed of in garbage cans.
9. Instead of using pesticides on house plants in your garden, try the following:
a. Pull weeds by hand.
b. Pull off and throw away infected leaves.
c. Rotate garden crops to control soil-borne diseases and to
maintain the nutrients of the soil.
d. Use biological control such as ladybugs or other insects to maintain
the condition of your soil.
Let’s Review
Answer the following questions.
1. What can you do to reduce water pollution in your home and community?
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26
2. How can you conserve water in your home and community?
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3. How can you help our government solve the water pollution problem?
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Compare your answers with those in the Answer Key on pages 35–36.
Let’s Read
What Does the Government
Do to Fight Water Pollution?
Are you aware of the government’s efforts in safeguarding public waters? Do you
involve yourself in environmental programs initiated by our government?
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) ensures the
implementation of DENR Administrative Order No. 32. This states that “the quality
of Philippine waters shall be maintained in a safe and satisfactory condition according
to their best usage.” In fact, water quality monitoring and control programs have been
set up by the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) of DENR to protect public
waters from the discharging and dumping of toxic wastes. The EMB conducts special
response and monitoring units during water pollution emergencies and catastrophes.
27
Letfs Try This
Go visit a river, lake or sea within or near your community. Make observations
and assess the water condition. If there are any abnormalities such as schools of dead
fish, oil spills, leaking barrels and other forms of pollution, report them to your local
environment department. Discuss also your observations of the water condition with
your Instructional Manager, coworkers, friends and family members.
Letfs Remember
. We can do many things in our own homes to help save water and protect it
from contamination.
. Conservation plays a major part in our efforts in protecting and preserving
water resources as well as improving the water condition.
. The best and most effective way to be safe at home and in the workplace is
to use earth- and human-friendly cleaning alternatives rather than hazardous
chemicals.
Letfs Try This
Share what you have learned in this module with your friends, coworkers and
family members. This is one way of increasing public awareness and promoting
environmental education. Educate people in your community about how they can help
protect our water resources.
28
Letfs Sum Up
. Water pollution is a result of human activity. Human beings are the greatest
contributors to water pollution.
. Water pollution is a result of too much waste and garbage thrown in bodies
of water. Water becomes contaminated with foreign substances such as
chemicals, industrial wastes and sewage. These are harmful to our
environment.
. Water pollution is harmful to our health, homes, environment and economy.
. There are many things that we can do to conserve water and help protect it
from contamination.
. Conservation plays a major part in our efforts in preserving, improving and
saving our water resources and environment.
. The best and most effective way to be safe at home and in the workplace is
to use earth- and human-friendly cleaning alternatives rather than hazardous
chemicals.
Congratulations! You have just completed this module. But before proceeding to
an entirely new module, take this last test. Do your best and good luck!
What Have You Learned?
1. How and when does water pollution take place?
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2. List the types of water pollution found in your community.
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3. Discuss the causes and effects of water pollution on your health, domestic
life, environment and economy.
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4. What solutions do you propose to end the water pollution problems in your
community?
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5. What can you do as an individual to help the government reduce our water
pollution problems?
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Were you able to answer the five items? Very good! Now compare your answer
with those in the Answer Key on pages 36–37. If your score is:
5 Very good! You have learned a lot from this module. You may now study
a new one.
3 – 4 Good! Just review the parts of the module that you didn’t understand
very well.
Read this module again to understand its lessons better. 0 – 2
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Answer Key
A. Let’s See What You Already Know (pages 2–4)
1. (a) Algae are minute organisms that grow rapidly in rivers. They use
up the oxygen in the river causing the suffocation of fish and water
plants in the area.
2. (c) Acid rain is an example of air-based water pollution. It occurs
when chemicals found in the air are brought down to bodies of water by
rainfall.
3. (b) Household ammonia is a nonhazardous substance used for
making cleaning solution. Solvents, thinners and rust removers are
hazardous chemicals.
4. (a) When disposing of hazardous household chemicals, never throw
them into your toilet bowl or kitchen drain. Neither should you place
them in the garbage can. They should be taken to the nearest hazardous
waste collection center.
5. (d) Examples of nonpoint source pollution are acid rain, the pouring of
toxic chemicals down the drain or the use of high-level phospate
detergents. Oil spills and the burning of toxic substances at seas are not
examples of nonpoint source pollution.
6. (c) Nitrate is the chemical contaminant that poses an immediate threat
to young children. High-contamination levels can result to “Blue
Baby Syndrome.”
7. (a) DENR Administrative Order No. 34 is about Revised Water
Usage and Classifications.
8. (c) An oil spill is an example of illegal dumping and marine transport
pollution.
9. (d) Radon is a chemical contaminant that is produced in certain types
of rocks. It can contaminate the water we drink.
10. (d) All of the above. Dysentery, cancer and Blue Baby Syndrome are
examples of illnesses/sicknesses caused by water pollution.
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B. Lesson 1
Let’s Study and Analyze (page 8)
Picture 1 (Before) – Description of a pollution-free environment
. Water is crystal clear.
. There are many fishes and plants in the river.
. The air is fresh.
. Trees, shrubs and plants are abundant.
Picture 2 (After) – Description of a polluted environment
. Water is heavily polluted.
. Fish and plants are contaminated or poisoned.
. Wastes and garbage are dumped along the riverbank.
. Toxic chemicals coming from an industrial plant flow
into the river.
Let’s Think About This (page 9)
Why is Captain River dying in the hospital?
1. Possible answer:
Yes. The river is dirty. It is contaminated with industrial
wastes. Plastic bags, candy wrappers and plastic cups are thrown
along the riverbank. Wastes and garbage are dumped in the river.
2. Activities contributing to water pollution in my community are:
. dumping of garbage and wastes in canals and in nearby
bodies of water;
. poor sewage disposal;
. use of detergents rich in phosphate;
. pouring of chemicals or toxic residues into drains; and
. flushing of chemicals down toilet bowls;
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3. Other human activities/practices that contribute to the pollution of our
water resources are:
a. dumping of toxic wastes in rivers and streams by industrial
plants;
b. dumping of garbage and wastes in canals and in nearby bodies
of water;
c. disposal of hot water by electrical plants in different bodies of
water, otherwise called thermal pollution;
d. oil spills;
e. poor sewage disposal;
f. use of detergents containing phosphate;
g. pouring toxic residues into kitchen and bathroom drains;
h. flowing of excess fertilizers, insecticides from agricultural
lands, and animal wastes into our rivers, streams,
and even groundwater;
i. disposal of radioactive wastes at seas;
j. burning of toxic wastes at seas;
k. illegal washing of empty ship tanks at sea;
l. nonpoint source pollution, e.g., pouring of chemicals or toxic
residues into drains or in the ground, flushing of chemicals in
toilet bowls, and the use of detergents that are high in
phosphate; and
m. pollution of rivers due to housing development.
Let’s Review (page 15)
1. Answers are same as the answers on question no. 3 of Let’s Think
About This on page 9.
a. dumping of toxic wastes in rivers and streams by industrial
plants;
b. dumping of garbage and wastes in canals and in nearby water
bodies;
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c. disposal of hot water by electrical plants in different water
bodies, called thermal pollution;
d. oil spills;
e. poor sewage disposal;
f. use of detergents containing phosphate;
g. pouring toxic residues into kitchen and bathroom drains;
h. flowing of excess fertilizers, insecticides from agricultural
lands, and animal wastes into our rivers, streams and even
groundwater;
i. disposal of radioactive wastes at seas;
j. burning of toxic wastes at seas;
k. illegal washing of empty ship tanks at sea;
l. nonpoint source pollution, e.g., pouring of chemicals or toxic
residues into drains or in the ground, flushing of chemicals in
toilet bowls, and the use of detergents that are high in
phosphate;
m. pollution of rivers due to housing development.
2. Thermal pollution is harmful to our water resources because hot
water, when poured into a body of water, reduces the oxygen
content, thereby endangering the living forms dwelling in the water.
3. Nonpoint source pollution is the process where in chemicals and
other pollutants around your home are picked up and carried
through the pipe drains to surface waters.
Let’s See What You Have Learned (page 19)
1. water pollution
2. algae
3–7. Sicknesses/illnesses caused by water pollution: cancer; birth
defects; Blue Baby Syndrome; and gastrointestinal diseases such as
dysentery, cholera, typhoid, hepatitis and diarrhea.
8. World Health Organization
9. five (5) million
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10–14. Five (5) household uses of water:
(a) washing of clothes and dishes;
(b) washing of cars;
(c) watering of plants;
(d) flushing of toilet bowls; and
(e) taking baths.
15. oil spill
C. Lesson 2
Let’s Try This (page 23)
Y K E S A E R G F E R
A U S T T U B E T T E
S R E V O M E R T S U
D T U L I P S A O A K
U D L E M P O L I S H
N O G S A L V D K C E
O L I S R E H C A E L
I P A I N T S F R U I
P E S T I C I D E S T
Let’s Review (pages 26–27)
1. Some suggestions to reduce water pollution in your community:
a. Conserve water.
b. Avoid using hazardous materials. Use nontoxic substitutes such as
vinegar, baking soda and household ammonia.
c. Do not litter on the streets.
2. Methods for conserving water:
a. Fix leaking faucets.
b. Turn-off faucets when not in use, e.g., while brushing.
c. Clean your car on the grass, so that the grass can be watered at the
same time.
3. Ways to help the government solve our water pollution problem:
a. Support and participate in government-initiated water conservation
or clean up projects.
35
b. Educate your neighbors about the harmful effects of toxic
chemicals.
c. Convince people to use nontoxic substitutes.
d. Attend related seminars to improve one’s awareness on matters
concerning environment protection.
D. What Have You Learned? (pages 29–30)
1. Water pollution takes place when too much waste and garbage are
dumped into the rivers, seas and other bodies of water.
2. Answers may vary. Possible answers are:
a. dumping and marine transport pollution;
b. air-based pollution; and
c. land-based pollution: thermal pollution, nonpoint source
pollution, etc.
3. Causes of water pollution:
a. dumping of toxic wastes in rivers and streams by industrial
b. dumping of garbage and wastes in canals and in nearby water
plants;
bodies;
c. disposal of hot water by electrical plants to different water bodies,
called thermal pollution;
d. oil spills;
e. poor sewage disposal;
f. use of detergents containing phosphate;
g. pouring toxic residues into your kitchen and bathroom drains;
h. flowing of excess fertilizers, insectisides from agricultural lands
and animal wastes into our rivers streams and even groundwater;
i. disposal of radioactive wastes in the sea;
j. burning of toxic wastes in the sea;
k. illegal washing of empty ship tank in the sea;
l. nonpoint source pollution, e.g., pouring of chemicals or residue
into drains or grounds, flushing chemicals down toilet bowls and
use of detergents that are high in phosphate; and
m. pollution of rivers due to housing development.
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Effects of water pollution:
a. destruction of marine life;
b. death of marine plants and fishes;
c. red tide;
d. decline of tourism industry;
e. bankruptcy of fishing industry;
f. decrease in agricultural production;
g. closing down of agricultural farms due to inadequate water supply;
h. minor health problems like nausea, lung irritation, skin rashes,
diarrhea, vomiting and dizziness; and
i. serious health problems such as cancer, birth defects and gastrointestinal
diseases.
4. Solutions to water pollution problems in your community:
a. Conserve water.
b. Avoid using hazardous materials.
c. Do not litter on the streets.
5. Ways to help government solve our water pollution problem:
a. Support and participate in government-initiated water conservation
or clean up projects.
b. Educate your neighbors about the harmful effects of toxic
chemicals.
c. Convince people to use nontoxic substitutes.
d. Attend related seminars to improve one’s awareness on matters
regarding environmental protection.
37
Glossary
Acid rain Rain that has a high concentration of sulfuric and nitric acids due to
air pollution
Algae A group of plants, variously one-celled, containing chlorophyll and found
in water and damp places
Borax A white, crystalline salt used in glass and soaps
Evaporation Changing a liquid or solid into vapor
Gastrointestinal Pertaining to the stomach and intestines
Nitrate Any of several chemical compounds containing nitrogen and used
especially to make soil more fertile
Pollution The action of polluting, especially by environmental contamination
with man-made wastes
Radon A chemical element or a radioactive gas
References
Trodd, Maureen. Do You Know? London: Grange Books, 1993.
Philippine Sustainable Development Network Foundation, Inc. Programs and
Projects.<http://www.psdn.org.ph/emb/progs.htm>. October 9, 2000, date
accessed.
Pure Water. 2000. Water Facts.<http://www.purewater.com/
L2 waterfacts contam.shtm. December 5, 2000, date accessed.
United States Environmental Protection Agency. 2000.<[[http://www.epa.gov>./|http://www.epa.gov>.]]
September 26, 2000, date accessed.
Valbuena, Rene T. “RP Environmental Profile”in Businessworld. June 5, 1989.

http://www.umich.edu/~gs265/society/waterpollution.htm
This site briefly discusses the introduction about water pollution, its causes and classifications.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_pollution
This site briefly discusses water pollution and its sources.


http://edugreen.teri.res.in/EXPLORE/water/pollu.htm
This site briefly discusses the contibutors to water pollution.


http://www.units.muohio.edu/dragonfly/water/h2oindex.shtml
This site briefly discusses the kinds of water pollution.


http://www.units.muohio.edu/dragonfly/water/cleanup.shtml
This site briefly discusses ways on how to prevent oil spills.


http://www.units.muohio.edu/dragonfly/water/whatyou.shtml
This site briefly discusses ways on how you could help in preventing water pollution.


http://www.cet.edu/ete/modules/waterq/forms.html
This site briefly discusses the forms of surface water pollution.


http://www.lenntech.com/water-pollution-FAQ.htm
This site briefly discusses faqs about water pollution such as where it came from and what are its sources.


http://www.cjnetworks.com/~sccdistrict/resubwt.htm
This site briefly discusses ways on how to prevent urban water pollution.


http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761572857/Water_Pollution.html
This site briefly discusses the major types of pollutants.