Plumbing, from the Latin for lead (plumbum), is the skilled trade of working with pipes for water, drainage and natural gas. Plumbing originated during the ancient civilizations such as Persian, Chinese, Indian and Roman civilizations as they developed public baths and needed to provide fresh water and drainage. The plumbing piping used to convey the water and waste was often made of lead. Now we understand the dangers of lead in plumbing, which is highly toxic if consumed and dangerous to the environment. As a result, nearly all manufactured plumbing products and plumbing materials are lead free, today.
Plumbing is used in every house in developed countries. Most people have their house plumbing connected to a large municipal plumbing system that then treats and disposes waste properly. Liquids drained from plumbing such as sinks are often dumped straight into the ocean or lakes with minimal processing as they are typically clean and not environmentally damaging. Materials flushed through plumbing such as a toilet often have to pass through several stages of waste treatment to ensure that the environment isn't damaged at all.