What Is Oil Pollution?

Oil pollution refers to pollution caused by oil leakage and discharge in the process of oil exploitation, transportation, loading and unloading, processing, and use, which mainly occurs at sea.

Spilled oil floats on the sea surface and spreads rapidly to form a film of oil, which can then be transferred and transformed by diffusion, evaporation, dissolution, emulsification, photodegradation, biodegradation, or absorption.

Oil spills can lead to many disastrous effects. In essence, oil can stick to the gills of fish, suffocate fish, inhibit the spawning and hatching of waterbirds, destroy the impermeability of bird feathers, and reduce the quality of aquatic products. The formation of an oil film can also hinder the reoxygenation of water, affect the growth of marine plankton, and destroy the marine ecological balance. Besides, it can also damage the coastal landscape and affect the aesthetic value of the seaside.

Oil pollution prevention and control, in addition to the control of sources of pollution and the prevention of accidents, can be achieved through oil containment using absorption materials, oil dispersants, and other practical solutions.

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