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Water Pollution: Home


You have picked a country or region in the world.  Your job is to research the water situation in your area asking the following questions:

1) Where - country or region?

2) What is happening?

3) Why? Please include scientific data eg. graph

You will produce at least a minimum of 3 slides to talk through and teach your peers what the water issue is in your country/region.


Library Schedule

1) Decide on how you will collect and organize your information. ISB Data Catcher or Google Doc?

2) What kind of information do you need?

  • Background information on your country or region - Enc. Britannica, Websites.
  • What is happening now? Newspapers, magazine and journal articles.
  • Remember to evaluate the source for:
    • Authority (who wrote it - are they experts in the field?)
    • Date (how current is this information?)
    • Purpose - website (what is the purpose of the site?  Is it to sell stuff or provide information?)
      • Good sites to check end with .edu (educational) or .gov (government) or .org (non profit organizations)

3) Once you have identified a source, in-depth reading for understanding is required.

4) Cite the source at the beginning so you don't forget later and can trace the information back to the origin.

5) Identify information in the source to support your project.

6) Paraphrase the information into your own words.  This helps to ensure you understand the information.

Remember everything you use needs to be traced back to the original source.



World Newspapers

Thousands of world newspapers at your fingertips


TweenTribune offers news from around the world. You can change the reading level of articles, search by grade level or lexile

CNN 10

CNN 10 is an on-demand digital news show ideal for explanation seekers on the go or in the classroom.


1) Encyclopedia Britannica

Search for a particular country and on the left sidebar, you will see subtopics. Under the land and climate subtopic, you will get an overview of which areas of a country are wet or day and therefore where most of the population may live.

eg. Kenya - Land and Climate

2) Google 

Search for the name of the country and water or "water pollution".  Eg. Kenya AND water (you are combining two search terms to narrow your search). Remember to evaluate the site.  Note down any keywords or phrases you can use when searching the databases. eg. pesticides, "synthetic organics", "contamination of water bodies" or "untreated sewage". 

3) Explora 

Search the database for newspaper or magazine articles.  You can start by combing two keywords eg., Kenya and water.  OR you can be more specific and search Kenya AND "untreated sewage".


Water Pollution: An Introduction

Water covers most of our planet, but a growing human population and industrialization is compromising this precious natural resource. While the amount of water is relatively unchanged, the quality has degraded. Since the Industrial Revolution, water pollution has become a big problem. Toxic chemicals even pollute remote rainforests and polar regions.

Environmental Pollution Centers

Water pollution is defined as the presence in groundwater of toxic chemicals and biological agents that exceed what is naturally found in the water and may pose a threat to human health and/or the environment. Additionally, water pollution may consist of chemicals introduced into the water bodies as a result of various human activities. Any amount of those chemicals pollutes the water, regardless of the harm they may pose to human health and the environment.

River and Stream Pollution

Dirt, bacteria, and even nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus can pollute rivers and streams. You might think that the pollution just gets washed away like going down the drain, but it ends up in lakes, ponds, and oceans. When the soil is left exposed from farming or mining, it washes into streams and can make the water murky. It's hard for many plants and fish to live in murky water. Bacteria from sewers or livestock waste can wash into the rivers and make people or wildlife sick.

Troubled Waters

From Canada's Saint Lawrence River to Australia's Great Barrier Reef, some species are disappearing while others are taking over. Is there something amiss with the waters of the earth? From marshes and ponds to the sea, aquatic ecosystems are changing. The industrial products and chemicals that have changed our world may be threatening our supply of clean, safe water. 

Water Works

Villagers who live near the Khao Laem Reservoir in Thailand like to use the reservoir water for laundry, bathing, cooking, and drinking. This water, however, is polluted. A company called Water is Life, founded by Ken Surritte in 2009, developed water-filter straws, and donated straws to the village. Surritte said just giving people the straws is not the ultimate answer. People need to understand why it's important to filter water.