Relationship Between Environment and Human Activities | Social Ecology


  • In its natural state, the earth is in equilibrium with its environment.
  • The population and activities of every species are governed by the resources available to them. humans alone have the potential together resources beyond their immediate surroundings and process them into different and more versatile forms.
  • This has made humans live thrive and flourish beyond natural constraints.
  • As a result of his activities, man-induced pollutants have overloaded the system and the natural equilibrium is getting disturbed.


  • Primitive humans use natural resources to satisfy their basic needs of air, water, food, and shelter.
  • With the dawn of the industrial revolution, humans turned their attention to other needs beyond those associated with survival.
  • The production, distribution, and use of items for fulfilling 20 needs usually result in more complex residuals and wastes, many of which are not compatible with or readily assimilated by the environment.
  • As the acquired needs increase so will the complexity of the production chain and mass and complexity of the pollutant generate?

Thus, the impact of human activities on the environment is of major concern. The effect on the environment due to human activities in various sectors are as follows:

Effect of agriculture on the environment:

  • Agriculture is considered to be the world’s oldest and largest industry.
  • Cultivation of crops, raising livestock, inland fisheries, dairy farming, and poultry farming.
  • All these activities provide food to people and our backbone of the development process of an area.
  • However, increasing population and poor management of agricultural lands are seriously affecting agricultural productivity.
  • The agriculture sector plays a crucial role in the overall social-economic development of the country.
  • Agriculture has its effect on three levels-
    • 1. local changes
    • 2. Regional changes
    • 3. Global changes.
  • 1. Local changes– as soil erosion, soil and water contamination, salinity, etc.
  • 2. Regional changes– as deforestation, desertification, air, water and soil pollution, sedimentation in the river, destruction of coral reef, changes in soil fertility, etc.
  • 3. Global changes– it includes climatic changes like ozone depletion, global warming, etc.

Effects of housing on the environment:

  • Housing characteristics, home decorations, pet-keeping, and other environmental factors have a significant impact on the health of the residents.
  • Scientific evidence has shown that housing can have profound and directly measurable effects on the physical and mental health of the residents.
  • The airtight sealing of modern buildings has helped in reducing spiraling energy cost but it has contributed significantly to the health problems arising due to indoor air pollution.
  • Potential sources of indoor air pollutants or chemicals are incredibly varied- petrol, Ink, oil, paint, plastic, rubber, tobacco smoking, excreta and urine of pets and birds, vanishes, adhesive, copying machines, etc.
  • A great variety of nasty symptoms can result from exposure to indoor air pollutants.
  • Some chemical pollutants may cause irritation of the strain eyes, nose, and throat, dizziness, nausea, shortness of breath, and coughing.
  • Exposure to some chemicals main results in long-term chronic health effects and diseases as- cancer, neurological dysfunction, etc.

Effects of industry on the environment:

  • The industry is essential to the development of a country and the prosperity of its people. but industrial processes cause major environmental problems as- depletion of natural resources, climate changes, air and water pollution, acid rain, deforestation, land degradation, etc.
  • At the same time, industrialization has made many positive contributions to health by getting success in reducing mortality and improving the health of the poor.
  • But it has adverse health effects also, true failure to properly plan for or and prevent the release of chemical-physical or biological pollutants into the environment.
  • The development and adoption of ‘clean or green’ techniques and technology by an industry that reduces harmful environmental impacts is key to prevent environmental degradation.

Effects of mining on environment:

  • The environmental effects of mining depend on factors such as ore quality, mining procedures, local hydrological conditions, climate, Rock-type, size of the operation, topography, etc.
  • The environmental impact varies with the stage of development of the resource via exploration, mining, and processing, etc.
  • The mining and processing of mineral resources usually have a considerable impact on land, water, air, and biological resources, they also have a social impact because of the increased demand for housing and services in mining areas.

Effect of transportation on the environment:

  • Transport generates a number of adverse environmental effects from both transport infrastructure and vehicles.
  • The effects can be direct, direct and cumulative- These effects are as follows-
    • Road accident
    • Higher average living cost on families
    • Environmental cost through a higher level of air pollution
    • Social cost through an increased level of stress and less time available for other activities
    • Transportation of hazardous substances increases the risk of spillage
    • extension of transport infrastructure needs extra land and destroys natural habitats
    • Used tires, oil, and air conditioning systems cause pollution, ozone depletion and greenhouse gases
    • Transport can increase by security risk by allowing new organicism diseases to enter a country or region.

Noise pollution

  • Environmental degradation causes a direct threat to the quality of life.
  • This necessitates the need for increasing awareness of the environmental and social costs of an industrial and technological process.

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Relationship Between Environment and Human Activities

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