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Transcript of Acid Rain
Keerit Kharpal (441172)
June 4th, 2012
What is Acid Rain?
Acid rain is rain that is more acidic than natural rain. In short, it has a lower pH level than normal rain and can cause acidic wearing.
Acid rain occurs when water (H O) is evaporated into the air and reacts with acidic, pollutive chemicals and gases
Acid rain is measured in pH units. They can tell how acidic the water is using a simple pH level scale:
Acid Rain/Acidic Lakes
Clean rain/ Bananas
Milk/ Healthy Lake
Sea water/ Eggs
Milk Of magnesia
Liquid Drain Cleaner
On the pH scale, half way (7) would represent a neutral pH level.The higher up the scale you go, the LESS acidic the item is. The lower down the scale you go, the MORE acidic it is.
What is the cause of Acid Rain?
There are two main precursors of acid rain. It can be both from natural and man made sources:
Natural - Volcanoes, decaying materials
Man-Made - Emissions, primarily from fossil fuel consumption
One of the biggest causes is fossil fuel consumption. Factories emit many pollutants, mainly Sulphur Dioxides (SO ) and Nitrogen oxides (NO)
These chemicals then
at into the air, mixing with oxygen, water, and other chemicals. This reaction creates a liquid low in pH, making it acidic
The result is mild forms of nitric and sulfuric acids
Winds carry pollutants over hundreds of kilometers, spreading the chemicals
When chemicals spread, they become apart of many weather phenomenon such as:
Cars and other motored vehicles also add to the causes of acid rain
The exhaust from cars and burning of fossil fuels for the energy is a form of pollution because the chemicals that are expelled go into the atmosphere
How does Acid Rain affect the environment?
Fires, volcanic eruptions, bacterial decomposition, and lightening greatly increase the amount of nitrogen oxide on the planet.
Nature usually has a balance and tries to keep rain at a pH of 5.0.
This means that when it precipitates, the rain reacts with alkaline chemicals found in soils and bedrock.
This reaction happens to try to neutralize the natural acidity
(cc) photo by medhead on Flickr
Acid Rain's affect on any particular environment depends on that environments acid sensitivity and its acid tolerance.
Some forests are very sensitive.
A forest's ability to resist acidity depends on the thickness and composition of the soil. The bedrock also plays an important factor
In areas where the neutralizing ability is low, acid rain releases aluminum from the soil, which is highly toxic to many species of aquatic organisms
Acid rain is particularly damaging to lakes, streams, and forests.
It causes a high acidification of lakes and streams
Many lakes that have had scientific examinations done have proved to have suffered from chronic acidity
This decreases biodiversity
The biggest impact is on the fish population
The low pH levels and high aluminum levels cause chronic stress to the fish
The stress leads to lower body weights and smaller sizes, making the fish less able to compete for food and habitat
When the water has a pH of 5.0 or lower, fish eggs cannot hatch and die.
Nitrogen of surface waters decrease oxygen, causing eutrophication.
Eutrophication is the blooming of toxic and non-toxic algae
Acid Rain damages trees, mainly ones at a higher elevation
It causes slower growth, injury, or death of forests
BUT! Acid Rain does not kill trees directly!
It also causes ecological changes in food chains.
Ecosystems can suffer because food supply for some organisms with a higher acid tolerance die and disappear.
550 premature deaths,1520 ER visits, 210,070 asthma symptoms are brought on by acid rain yearly
It causes health problems like asthma, dry coughs, headaches, eyes, nose, and throat irritations.
Acid rain can also heavily damage the lungs
Skin that comes in contact with acid rain may become irritated,infected, burned, or even develop diseases, depending on the exposure and the acidity of the rain
Humans are not directly affected by acid Rain
Acid rain goes into the food we eat
It affects our crops, slimming food supplies
The less fish and crops there are, the less income there is, therefore, the more the economy sufferers
Acid rain also damages buildings, statues, and landmarks
Because acid rain affects the environment, that means tourist areas could be ruined and shut down
How are we solving the Acid Rain issue?
Prezi by: Keerit Kharpal