Sources of Water Contamination

There are many causes of water pollution or contamination. They can be broken down into direct (point) and indirect contaminant (nonpoint) sources.

Direct (Point Source) Contamination:

  • Effluent outfalls from factories, refineries, or waste treatment plants that emit fluids of varying quality directly into urban water supplies
  • Oil & Gas Industry

Indirect (Nonpoint Source) Contamination:

  • Enters the water supply from soils/groundwater systems and from the atmosphere by rain water
  • Residue of human agricultural practices (fertilizers, pesticides, etc.)
  • Improperly disposed of industrial wastes
  • Atmospheric contaminants such as gaseous emissions from automobiles, factories or bakeries
  • Agriculture
  • Industrial