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Acid Rain

Essay by   •  October 19, 2010  •  313 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,714 Views

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Acid rain is considered by many people to be one of the most serious environmental problems of our time. It is a global problem that is slowly eating away at our world. Angus Smith came up with the word acid rain when he wrote about pollution in England.

Most rain is naturally acidic because of the carbon dioxide (CO2) in the air that dissolves with rainwater and forms a weak acid. This kind of acid in the rain is good because it helps dissolves minerals in the soil that both plants and animals need.

Recently there has been some concern that the acidity of rain caused by man has increased over the last few decades. Acid rain damages wildlife, plants and rivers. It can cause the complete destruction of forests and damage buildings, sculptures and can even harm us humans.

Acid rain is caused by pollution. Pollutants like sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide stay in the atmosphere and eventually react with the moisture in the air. When this polluted soultion falls to the ground, it is called acid rain. The source of these pollutants is not only from burning fossil fuels, but from both motor vehicle and machinery manufacturing exhausts.

Sulphur dioxide is unlike other kinds of acid pollution because it takes awhile to react with the moisture so it will have been taken long distances by the wind. Even worse is that rain and snow are not the only ways the environment can be damaged by air pollution.

Although places like the Adirondacks in New York have been seriously damaged because the lime in their soil is so easily dissolved by acid rain, there are ways to bring it under control. When both the United States and Canada began reducing the amount of sulphur dioxide released into the air, fresh water lakes and ponds in parts of Canada showed some improvement.



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