Soil Pollution

Soil Pollution

A Small Dose of Soil Pollution

  • An Introduction to the Health Effects of Soil Pollution

Soil Pollution Dossier


  • Name: Soil Pollutants
  • Definition of soil pollution: contamination of the indoor or outdoor soil by any chemical, physical, or biological agent that modifies the natural characteristics of the soil, reducing its beneficial usability for people and/or ecosystems
  • Use: no desired use unless mining of pollutants
  • Recommended daily intake: none (not essential)
  • Absorption: skin, inhalation, and gut system
  • Sensitive individuals: fetus and children, women of childbearing age, the elderly, people with chronic health problems
  • Toxicity/symptoms: varies depending on the chemicals
  • Regulatory facts: in the US the EPA sets some standards for soil pollutants
  • General facts: emissions of billions of pounds of chemicals and particulate matter every year from a wide range of products and industries including agriculture, and from combustion of fossil fuels such as coal and gasoline
  • Environmental effects: widely distributed in environment, linked with climate change and acid rain, and can affect wildlife and ecological health
  • Recommendations: minimize soil pollution on a global scale, avoid exposure by children and other sensitive groups, expand research on toxicity and alternative sources of energy, adopt precautionary approach, reduce the use of fossil fuels and pesticides, support international treaties, reduce use of all materials that generate waste


Soil Pollution Chapter

  • A Small Dose of Soil Pollution - chapter pdf (updated November 24, 2016)

PowerPoint Presentation

  • A Small Dose of Soil Pollution - PowerPoint presentation (under development)

More Information and References

European, Asian, and International Agencies


North American Agencies


Non-Government Organizations


  • National Pesticide Information Center - a cooperative agreement between Oregon State University and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Soil and Pesticides. Online at [accessed July 24, 2016]    NPIC provides objective, science-based information about pesticides and pesticide-related topics to enable people to make informed decisions.






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