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Environmentalprotection and conservation is a personal responsibility for all human beingsbecause everyone is a part of planet Earth. What one person does to theenvironment affects the entire world, despite the distance or what they havedone. The importance of protecting the environment lies in not only the healthof the planet, but also the lives of those living on Earth as well.

The way aperson treats their environment can either positively or negatively affect thequality of the environment they live in. Along with having a harmful impact onhuman health, air, water, and land pollution can cause a variety ofenvironmental problems. Exposureto high levels of air pollution can lead to various respiratory diseases andpossibly cancer. Air pollutants include transportation vehicles releasingcarbon monoxide gas, poisonous gases from factories and power plants, and tobaccosmoke from cigars. The constant inhalation of air pollutants is detrimental to humanhealth because air is needed to live and because humans are always breathing,they are continuously taking in the toxins and contaminates present in the air.Smoking is an example of an air pollutant that negatively affects theenvironment and the health of the smoker, along with those that are near thesmoker at the time that the cigarette is lit. A smoker easily breathes out overa thousand toxic chemicals into the air from just one cigarette. In addition topolluting the air, cigarette smoke is responsible for contaminating andpolluting the land and water.

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Cigarettes that are left on the ground may pollutethe soil and cause damage to plants. Cigarette butts that end up in watersources can cause death in marine species through ingestion. Justas air is needed for human survival, water is also an important component neededto survive. Humans need clean water to drink, plants and crops need water forgrowth, and marine species need water to live.

Water polluted by pollutantssuch as lead and pesticides can cause neurological and kidney damage,reproductive problems, and high blood pressure. Cities and big businesses liketo use rivers, lakes, and oceans as a dumping site for chemicals and waste products.In addition to this, people like to throw trash and other materials into thewater.

Water pollution affects marine life because the fishes are in directcontact with the water. They are surrounded by the water and either activelyabsorb or drink the water. The pollutants in water may result in the extinctionof marine species. Additionally, animals may eat the contaminated fish anddrink the contaminated water. The toxin then moves up the food chain, affectingmany animals because of the chemicals and pollutants in the water. Seafood isan important staple in human diet and if the aquatic species are infected withharmful chemicals, the pollutant will be passed onto the human body, allowingfor disease and death to take place.

Humans may also drink the contaminatedwater, leading to diarrhea and more serious diseases. Landpollution affects human health, spreads disease from landfill sites, pollutesthe soil, and interferes with atmospheric balance. Most of the trash thathumans throw out is recyclable but there is only a small percentage that is actuallyrecycled. Plastic waste is one of the top recyclable items and it containsformaldehyde, which is dangerous to human health. Cancer, skin diseases, andbirth defects are among some of the illnesses associated with plastic waste. Becausethere is a small percentage of plastic waste being recycled than there shouldbe, there is a lot more waste that contain dangerous chemicals that have accessto polluting the soil as well as increase the size of landfill sites, andtherefore increase the spread of disease from insects, rodents, and birds thatroam around the landfill sites.

Furthermore, land pollution may lead to deforestation.Deforestation ruins the habitat of animal species and cuts down the oxygen supplythat those trees would have provided if they were still up and standing. 

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