Rivers are an important aspect of our environment since they not only offer drinking water to billions of people but also serve as a home for our valuable animals. However, worldwide pollution, such as the discharge of industrial, municipal, and agricultural wastes, has significantly impacted the river environment and jeopardized the availability of safe drinking water. Furthermore, dirty rivers running into the ocean might have far-reaching consequences.
Here are the world’s top 12 most polluted rivers.
The Ganges Waterway is India’s most holy river. The river, according to Hindus, washes people of their sins. The Ganges River is the world’s third biggest river, serving almost two billion people. While the river is sacred, it has been subjected to massive water pollution as a result of the dumping of raw sewage and chemicals, and higher incidences of waterborne diseases have been reported in communities that are frequently exposed to this holy river, which is now covered with a layer of floating plastics and other wastes.
The Citarum River is one of the world’s most polluted rivers. The industrial wastes from 2,000 firms have caused mercury levels in the water to rise well over the legal limit. From the source to the discharges, the river is filthy and contaminated. The Citarum River, like the Ganges, supplies a large population. Indonesia, the Citarum’s habitat, has a population of around 200 million people. The river passes through a region with dense human populations and a lot of enterprises. With over 50,000 fatalities every year, the river has consistently robbed the country of its people.
Because of its distinctive color, the Yellow River has been one of China’s most famous rivers for thousands of years. However, this river has become a dumping site for chemical manufacturers, rendering the water unfit for cultivation. More precisely, the coal mining business discharges a large amount of garbage into the river after utilizing it to power its activities.
Nonetheless, many continue to rely on the river for drinking water. As a result, the area surrounding the river has experienced an increase in the frequency of waterborne infections, cancer, and birth deformities. Recently, attempts have been made to discourage people from drinking water from this river since it is dangerous for human or animal consumption.
This is possibly Europe’s most polluted river. Although the river’s source is clean and safe for drinking, industrial and agricultural pollutants have made it so poisonous that it has been linked to an alarming surge in liver cancer cases in the vicinity. Worse, the river floods readily, causing mudslides and toxicity in the land close. The Sarno River has become more polluted as a result of poor waste treatment control.
Millions of Bangladeshis rely on this river for survival. It is also a significant economic resource for the country because it is one of the country’s longest rivers. The river is mostly contaminated by tanneries along its banks, as well as human waste, plastics, and animal corpses. The river has gone dark, and the aquatic life in it has perished.
Millions of Filipinos live along this river and utilize the water for drinking and cultivation. The river is largely polluted by trash from tanneries, dumping, and gold refineries. Non-recyclable items, such as plastic bottles, are being dumped on the water’s surface. Furthermore, the water contains pebbles containing heavy metals, which represent a health risk to the population.
The river, like the Sarno, is prone to flooding, bringing debris to the area and causing soil deterioration. Water contamination is harmful to the Philippines’ fish businesses because hazardous metals like lead contribute to the mortality of aquaculture.