Land-based sources of pollution have a major impact on planetary health and on the oceans, evidenced by the development of a Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA). Growing populations, increasingly intensive and large-scale agriculture, and booming urbanization mean a growing amount of wastewater discharge into aquatic ecosystems and nutrient runoff to waterways. Together, these lead to eutrophication, toxic algae blooms, greater incidence of water-borne disease, lowered resilience of ecosystems to environmental change, and harm to species, including humans. Wastewater pollution and nutrient runoff are evident in freshwater and fluvial systems, but in this MOOC we also aim to focus on the impacts and solutions that pertain to coasts and oceans.
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