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Environmental Health Issue

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Part 1

The selected environmental health issue is water as this is one of the alarming environmental health issues that can be found in the present day and it has its severe impact on the health and lives of the people (Vinceti et al. 2017). The chosen region in this context is India, one of the Asian countries that are a developing one and thereby having some of the environmental health issues like safe drinking water or environmental water.  However based on this environmental health issue and also on the specific region the WHO (1999) DPSEEA framework is used (Vinceti et al. 2017). The driving forces, the pressures, the state changes, exposures and effects are discussed and this comes within the DPSEEA framework only.

Drivers- India is a rapidly growing country and has one of the highest population rates in the world. In the past few years the country has successfully invested in industrial sector and thereby industrialization is at its peak (Vinceti et al. 2017). The primary industries in India include Textile industry, Food Processing Industry, Software Industry is booming, Petroleum industry, Chemical industry, Cement industry and some others (Vinceti et al. 2017). Other than this urbanization of India is a continuous process and in present time maximum number of people lives in the urban areas. The adoption of mixed economy is also a reason of urbanization in the country and other than this the increasing number of people is also a reason of expanding the urban cities and towns (Vinceti et al. 2017). Thereby the main or the primary drivers of environmental health issue like water are urbanization, growth, population and industrialization (Vinceti et al. 2017). All these factor leads to water contamination or pollution of water and also scarcity of fresh and natural water (Srinivasan et al. 2016). The growth of industries is leading to discharge of many toxic products in the water and that is contaminating the water bodies directly and thus the availability of natural water is also decreasing and the risk of consuming polluted water both by humans and by the marine lives is also increasing at a high rate (Srinivasan et al. 2016). Other than this the rapid growth of population is also increasing the water demand among them and thus at times there can be scarcity of water (Srinivasan et al. 2016). One third of the population lives in villages and many of them does not know the proper way of handling sewage water, waste water and thus water pollution is a common aspect that affects the health of the humans (Chang et al. 2015). Urbanization is also leading to the environmental health issue like water and this happens through land erosion, accumulation of sediments in river and water bodies, converting a water body into land and others (Srinivasan et al. 2016). These approaches impact the quality of the water and leads to environmental health issue like safe drinking water.

Pressures- Pressures like increasing demand of water, space, production and others are the main and the vital factors that have an impact on the environmental health issue like safe drinking water (Srinivasan et al. 2016). With increasing demand of production in all spheres there is a need of water and at times untreated, waste water is also used for production in large scale industries and that directly impacts the health of the people (Chang et al. 2015). Pressure of space is also leading to bogging down natural water bodies in an artificial way and that is also leading to lack of environmental water (Srinivasan et al. 2016). These pressures are always constant in India with such a huge number of population and thus the impact is also severe which is directly related to the health condition of the people of the country and leads to absence of drinking water and safe or natural water for them (Srinivasan et al. 2016). These pressures are very common and leads to the environmental health issue as discussed here.

State- clearing of natural vegetation, loss of ecosystems, natural hazards and others are the primary factors in this phase and all these has a direct link with the environmental health issue like safe drinking water (Vinceti et al. 2017). The state or the government is responsible here and is accountable here for the public health and to prevent environmental health issue but that is not the case (Vinceti et al. 2017). Lack of their concern about loss of ecosystem, natural hazards, clearing of natural vegetation for any constructions or developments and others leads to environmental health issue like cholera, typhoid, dysentery and others and there is a high risk of consuming contaminated or polluted water as well which is very harmful for human body (Vinceti et al. 2017). The factors here all are responsible of downgrading the quality of water and thus leading of environmental health issue.

Exposure- exposure to toxic materials or substances, sewages are very common in India where there are small and large scale industries and also lack of awareness among people about proper handling of water (Vinceti et al. 2017). This kind of exposure makes the water fully polluted and at the same time makes the water quality poor (Vinceti et al. 2017). Exposure to pathogenesis is also harmful as this contaminates water and human use is limited. This is leading of environmental health issue.

Effects- effects are important and the effects mainly include health damages, increasing of diseases and ailments, loss of marine life and human life (Vinceti et al. 2017). The framework gives an estimation of all the factors that leads to environmental health issue and in that context the effects are also pretty well understood and are mentioned here (Chang et al. 2015).

The DPSEEA pretty well captures all the factors that are leading to environmental health issue but apart from there are some other factors as well that has a relation with the environmental health issue (Kammen and Hassenzahl 2018). The factors mainly include social, political and economic influences. Firstly there is no social awareness about environmental health issue like safe drinking water and aspects like water borne diseases and importance of safe drinking water and besides this there is also no social interventions to treat sewages, proper disposal home waste, importance of sanitation, water conservation so that natural water can be preserved and others (Kammen and Hassenzahl 2018). All these leads to environmental health issue related to water (Kammen and Hassenzahl 2018). On the other hand economic factor like lack of money to invest in health improvement plan and approach, building sewage treatment systems, building water conservation techniques and implementing modern techniques and procedures to keep the water safe for drinking are not done and that impacts the health leading to environmental health issue (Kammen and Hassenzahl 2018). Political influences like rules and regulations, political strife, passing of bills by the political party and others leads to environmental health issue related to drinking unsafe water. These are thereby some of the points that are relevant in this context.

Part 2

At present under the guidelines and regulation of WHO the aspect of environmental health issue is taken seriously in India and various government aided health agencies and Ngos are coming up to resolve the issue or to look after the issue that is there (Hook and Patel 2017). The factors that are leading to environmental health issue are being supervised strictly. For example- the handling of toxic materials in water bodies, evacuation of waste from industries and home and that later on getting mixed up with natural water are strictly regulated (Hook and Patel 2017). Plans and policies like clean India, waste removal policies and others are being conducted and this is very beneficial when it comes to dealing with environmental health issue. Regulatory measures like Control of Pollution Act, Water Act 1974, environmental principles and also the legislative guidelines of WHO are being followed in India and this is making the environmental health issues a manageable one (Hook and Patel 2017). The key stakeholders such as agencies, government, state authority, social communities and others are becoming more active on this prospect and they are working towards combating this environmental health issue and thereby challenging the predicted ailments and diseases that are associated with it (Kammen and Hassenzahl 2018). Other than this important infrastructure are also being made and this dwells on conservation of water, preservation of water, proper treatment of water and others (Hook and Patel 2017). The environmental health issue is required to be treated from multiple sides and this infrastructure is also an important areas  of concern in this aspect.

The suggestion to address the gaps in current policy is to revise the policy as per the contemporary situation and the contemporary surrounding and also is to make the management system a cohesive and rigid one so that there is an approach towards bettering the condition and also towards bettering the situation (Hook and Patel 2017). Suggestion here is to develop proper management practices that lead to resolving the environmental health issue.

Reference:

  • Chang, Q., Wang, W., Regev‐Yochay, G., Lipsitch, M. and Hanage, W.P., 2015. Antibiotics in agriculture and the risk to human health: how worried should we be?. Evolutionary applications8(3), pp.240-247.
  • Frumkin, H., 2016. Urban sprawl and public health. Public health reports.
  • Hook, S. and Patel, I., 2017. Addressing Water Pollution: A review of Zero Liquid Discharge Policy in Tirupur, India.
  • Kammen, D.M. and Hassenzahl, D.M., 2018. Should we risk it?: Exploring environmental, health, and technological problem solving. Princeton University Press.
  • Robinson, T.P., Bu, D.P., Carrique-Mas, J., Fèvre, E.M., Gilbert, M., Grace, D., Hay, S.I., Jiwakanon, J., Kakkar, M., Kariuki, S. and Laxminarayan, R., 2016. Antibiotic resistance is the quintessential One Health issue. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene110(7), pp.377-380.
  • Srinivasan, V., Lele, S., Thomas, B. and Jamwal, P., 2016, January. The transition from water scarcity to water pollution in Thippagondanahalli Halli catchment, India. In Urbanization and the Environment: Eighth Biennial Conference of the Indian Society for Ecological Economics. Bangalore (pp. 4-6).
  • Vinceti, M., Filippini, T., Cilloni, S., Bargellini, A., Vergoni, A.V., Tsatsakis, A. and Ferrante, M., 2017. Health risk assessment of environmental selenium: emerging evidence and challenges. Molecular medicine reports15(5), pp.3323-3335.

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