Impact of Agriculture on water quality

Document Type:Research Paper

Subject Area:Law

Document 1

This paper aims to determine the evidence gap, challenges, potential solutions, and progress towards handling environmental water quality issues connected with the UK agriculture. In addition, it considers the possibility of balancing significant growth with the aspirations for water quality in food production to offer a good livelihood for farmers and meet the objectives of food security. Defining water quality Water has suspended and dissolved organic and inorganic substances. Regular water differs in its physical and chemical aspects while the freshwater ecosystems evolve with these specific conditions. The ecological networks rooted to these conditions are sensitive to the provision of chemicals in the ecosystem. The increase in drainage from hill slops results in flashier river flows and river bank erosion, whose consequence is downstream sediment issues.

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Poor management of the agricultural land in the river banks and margins lowers vegetation cover, increases temperature, and the water’s ability to hold oxygen. It ends up interrupting the ecological process such as the rate of fish spawning. Arguably, about 70% of the sediments polluting water bodies are obtained from agricultural activities (Joseph and Phillip, 7). To this end, the rural and agriculture land management are responsible for the failures in water quality in the UK. Drinking Water Inspectorate Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) regulates the quality of drinking water for Wales and England (Clement, 629). It is an independent body created in 1990 during the privatization of the water industry (Clement, 629). Its main objective is to retail public confidence in the quality and safety of public water supplies via inspection, audit, reporting, prosecution, and enforcement.

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The inspectors tasked with this responsibility have high water quality and water supply monitoring experience. b. Local authorities are responsible for the quality of private water supplies via the implementation of the regulations in 1991 (Van and Micheal, 126). The main role of private water supplies is to offer technical advice to the local authorities, which will ensure uniformity of interpretation of drinking water statutes. e. Local authorities Under the 1991 Act, local authorities are responsible for checking the sufficiency and safety of all water supplies in their jurisdiction (Kitsios, 12). Based on the public water supplies, local authorities ought to possess active working arrangements in areas with all water licensees and companies who supply water in their jurisdiction. The transfer continuum approach implies that the effects of diffuse or point solution from agriculture can happen some distance from the source.

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The less lethal problems upstream can pool to huge effects downstream at a particular time in the future. To this end, managing diffusion pollution is based on prevention instead of cure, implementing the best practices at the farm level to prevent the field-level and small-scale impact from pooling to significant effects. Application of good agricultural practices, which includes the use of fertilizer and manure before prolonged or long rains. Applying slurry injection approaches can lower the risk of nutrients reaching water supplies. The NAP will offer a framework for lowering the impacts and risks of pesticides on the environment and human health, encourage the enforcement of joined pest management and use alternative techniques such as pesticides’ non-chemical alternatives. Special rules in the UK NAP have been provided to further minimize the number of water bodies at risk of pesticides, in addition to compulsory training for distributors and operators, regular calibration checks and inspection of equipment, and aerial applications must be permitted first.

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c. Learning from doing and raising awareness The Scottish government, the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA), and partner organizations have recently implemented a coordination approach aim at reducing diffusion pollution in rural sources (Calijuri, 5374). Specifically for agriculture, they implement their objectives through a diffusion pollution plan, which constitutes direct visits to all farmers to advise them on their regulatory duties and motivate them to seek funding to improve water quality. In return, they received funding and support for land management to protect the water quality. The UK needs to do more to raise awareness of the connectedness of water and land systems, the actual value of water, and the potential role of the community in protecting water and land services. d.

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