Pollution of rivers, lakes and oceans - Types of Water Polution

Surface water pollution includes pollution of rivers, lakes and oceans. A subset of surface water pollution is marine pollution which affects the oceans. Nutrient pollution refers to contamination by excessive inputs of nutrients.

Globally, about 4.5 billion people do not have safely managed sanitation as of 2017, according to an estimate by the Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation.

Lack of access to sanitation often leads to water pollution, e.g. via the practice of open defecation: during rain events or floods, the human feces are moved from the ground where they were deposited into surface waters.

Simple pit latrines may also get flooded during rain events. When sewers overflow during storm events this can lead to water pollution from untreated sewage. Such events are called sanitary sewer overflows or combined sewer overflows.