Human wastewater (sewage) has been entering the sea for as long as there has been a coastal population and ice cores now show significant long-range movement of metal wastes dating from at least the Roman times. The human health impacts of metal poisoning were known to the Romans and the need for clean water has also been long recognised. This chapter focuses on pollutants, such as sewage, metals, pesticides, for which the impacts have long been known and for which regulations/legislative control measures are in place. As such, these types of pollution should be a thing of the past: the problem should be solved. Against this perspective, the extent to which the marine environment continues to be impacted by them and the reasons for these ongoing concerns are considered.
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