Our environment substantially impacts our mental and physical well-being, an essential aspect of our survival. Polluting it and taking measures that affect it negatively may not have an instant effect on inhabitants’ health, but it harms their well-being. On the other hand, being environment friendly and ensuring that cleanliness prevails enhances health as it lifts people’s spirits and better affects people’s internal health. People believe that environment is only about natural things: the air we breathe in, trees, rivers, or streams. Contrary to their belief, the environment is a term that enveloped all the surrounding elements, including roads, buildings, pathways, and others. All these factors influence people’s health.
Health experts and environmentalists raise awareness of the multiple factors that can harm the environment, consequently, public health. They urge people to play their part and take care of their surroundings. Maintaining cleanliness, planting trees, reducing plastic, and enhancing nature are few ways that help in beautifying the environment, and they positively impact public health. Despite environmentalists’ efforts, many people are ignorant about environmental issues. They do not understand the implications of their actions on their surroundings.
Below we are listing some environmental issues that affect public health:
- Air Pollution
As per WHO, a significantly higher number of people succumb to death resulting because of air pollution. The air we breathe indirectly impacts health, and inhaling toxic gases, chemicals, and other different materials from the perspective becomes a significant reason for deteriorating health. Air pollution is a considerable concern for people, plants, and animals and is affecting biodiversity. Many people are inclined to take a degree in public health and want to enhance environmental health. Fortunately, many educational institutes now offer e-degrees and allow people to equip themselves with academic knowledge of the field. Aspirants can enroll in an online mph as the programs are flexible and provide an in-depth insight into factors concerning public health, including environmental issues.
- Climate Change
Another environmental issue that is rapidly destroying our surroundings and harming our health is climate change. It surfaced in the last couple of decades and is constantly worsening the natural surroundings. Greenhouse gases that trap heat from sunlight and ignite the earth are a significant cause of climate change. It is the reason behind the surging oceanic temperatures impacting marine habitats and ecosystems. In addition, climate change leads to sudden and strike changes in weather, which results in different diseases and affects people, especially those with weak immunity.
Plants are a natural way of improving air quality and providing oxygen. Cutting trees on a massive scale and destroying forests to build high-rise buildings impact public health and diseases. Aside from reducing toxins from the air, plants are a source of food and medicines for the public and animals. Moreover, plants help manage the temperature. Deforestation reduces oxygen supply. It increases greenhouse gas emissions, which is the biggest reason for climate change. Deforestation is a major environmental issue, and with a rising population, it will continue to worsen.
- Poor Quality of Water
Water is essential for survival, and people need it for several purposes. However, as per a report, more than 780 million people do not have access to clean water. Poor quality of water means regular consumption of toxic chemicals and other impurities. Many children die because of water pollution, and many adults suffer from several diseases stemming from water pollution. Marine dumping, industrial and nuclear waste, eutrophication, oil pollution, and atmospheric depositions are several factors contributing to poor water quality.
- Disastrous Waste
The waste management system needs to up its game as hazardous material disposal pollutes air, land, and water, impacting public health. Industrial waste, toxic chemicals are dumped in oceans, and excess plastic makes the environment filthy. Industrialization may be raising general living standards but giving many underlying health issues to an increasing number of people. Moreover, the messy surroundings of residential areas and filthy neighborhoods give rise to numerous health issues. A proper disposal system must be in place to improve environmental health, consequently enhancing the public’s well-being.
- Natural Resources Deficiency
Nature has a healing characteristic, and it helps keep people mentally and physically healthy. People of older ages did not face any health issues because they lived in natural environments. In contrast, the modern world survives in artificial things. Depleting natural resources has led people to turn to manufactured materials, and it is influencing public health. The increasing world population is leading to the deficiency of natural resources. Consumption of synthetic materials in high quantity weakens the immune system and gives people other internal body issues.
Environmental issues are rising at an alarming rate which is a significant cause of many diseases. Global warming, water, land pollution, depletion of the ozone layer, urban sprawl waste disposition, and others harm public health. People can modify their lifestyles and bring some changes to preserve natural recourse and prevent environmental damage. Environmental health is a top priority of environmentalists, and they strive to maintain the natural surroundings. Environment wellness is not an individual health concern, as it impedes community health. Clean air, fertile soil, safe and healthy water are the necessities for human survival and positively influence wellness at a larger scale.