University of Florida

Sources of Pollution: Sediments

Sediments are the most common form of water pollution. Sediments are tiny bits of soil, rocks or other solid particles that are washed or blown from land into the water. They exacerbate flooding by clogging stormwater sewers, settle in lakes and streams (causing them to become shallow), limit sunlight penetration and photosynthesis, and affect fish by blocking their gills and covering their eggs.

Sediments can come from the following locations:

  • construction sites,
  • farming activities,
  • logging activities,
  • mining, and
  • stormwater runoff from neighborhoods and businesses.

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