Unit 3: Oil Pollution - Causes and Effects

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  • Oil Pollution
    • Causes
      • Vehicle engine lubricating oil leaking or being discarded
      • Industrial machine oil washed into drains or mixed with other effluents
      • Washing ship oil tankers and disposing the dirty water at sea
      • Tanker accidents
      • Discharged bilage (waste) water or lubrication oil released due to accidents
      • Accidental spillages from oil refineries, storage or pipelines
      • Leakages during the exploration, extraction and drilling from oil platforms
    • Effects
      • Reduces dissolution of oxygen at water surface
      • Smothers and asphyxiates molluscs
      • Can be toxic
      • Bird feathers lose their water proofing and thermal insulation = hypothermia
      • Ingested oil prevents digestion = starvation
      • Birds unable to locate mates by smell = reduced breeding success


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