ACID RAIN – 994 words – College
ACID RAIN – 994 words – College

ACID RAIN – 994 words – College

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  • Pages: 3 (1062 words)
  • Published: January 11, 2019
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RYAN W.

P.D.2

9/23/99

We have had acid rain ever since the first rains fell on a new

planet(Labastille 660). Acid rain commonly refers to what is more precisely

identified as the wet and dry processes for the deposition of acidic inputs to

ecosystems (Regan 195). Acid rain is nothing new all rain has a certain

amount of acidity. In the last 20 years we have increased the acidity of rain

up to a 1,000 times in some areas (Baines 18). Acid rain is a result of the air

pollution that human activities cause, so if we want to help save planet earth

we must begin to do something about it.

Two of the main ingredients of acid rain are sulfur and nitrogen oxide

that are caused by environmental problems like volcanic eruptions, forest

fires, and even the slow decomposition of organic matter. Though the cause

for the majority of the sulfur and nitrogen oxide in our atmosphere are from

human causes such as coal plants and cars. In a year one coal plant can emit

400,000 tons of sulfur (Labastille 661). There are about 550 million vehicles

in the world today enough to make a line of traffic long enough to stretch

around the world about 40 times (Baines 21). Coal plants burn fossil fuels

which all give away sulfur when they are burned. Some of the fossil fuels

burned are coal, oil, and natural gasses.

One of our natural resources acid rain effects the most is our lakes and

streams. To find out how acid rain effects our streams and lakes we look at

the PH level of our lakes. The healthy PH level of a lake is 6.5. In Norway

some lakes have a PH level of 4.5 which is 20 times mo

...

re acidic than normal

(Baines 19). Half of acid rain that ends up in lakes and streams get there

through dry particles in the air, while the other half enters the water in wet

form like rain, snow, sleet, hail, dew, and fog. Also when acid rain hits the

ground it can run into streams and lakes(Lucas Acid 19). Acid rain is

devastating for plants and animals in certain areas like New York and

Norway. In Adirondack mountains in New York acid rain has caused 180

pounds to have no more trout or birds which were once plentiful of trout and

birds(Labastille 653). In Norway thousands of trout stocks have been lost

forever due to acid rain(Rivers 1).

Another environmental problem caused by acid rain is the rainforest

depletion. The main reason that acid rain effects the rainforest is it ruins the

soil that the trees grow in. The indirect effects of acid rain on forests are

caused by the loss of soil nutrients(Forests 2). In very acidic conditions

aluminum becomes soluble and is released from the soil. At high enough

concentrations aluminum is toxic and damages tree roots(Forests 2). Three

places that acid rain effects forests the most are Czechoslovakia, Norway, and

Germany. In the hills of Czechoslovakia acid rain damage is so severe that

whole areas once forested are now treeless moorland(Baines 20). Germany

forestry scientists estimated that one third of the Black Forest in Germany has

been damaged by acid rain(Forests 2). The main nutrients that acid rain

displaces are calcium and magnesium.

Acid rain has effects on humans and animals to. Acid rain effects all

animals that live

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near a lake or pond that is effected by acid

rain(Labastille660). Animals are effected by acid rain by when a animal eats

a plant that acid rain has effected. The acid in the plants dont hurt the

animal right away but it accumulates in its tissue. The main way acid rain

effects humans are humans eat the tissue that is effected by acid rain and can

have serious effects. Two of the most deadly substances that acid rain causes

to release from the ground are mercury and aluminum. Mercury can cause

brain damage in unborn children and nerve disorders, brain damage, and

death in adults.

Acid rain also has a strong effect on historical sculptures and buildings.

Acid rain has caused buildings and sculptures to wear away in the last 20

years more than they had worn away in the previous 2000 years(Wearing

History 2). Some areas have acid rain effects worse than others. It matters

how often it rains there and the content of the acid in the rain. The stone

decorations of some historical buildings have been dissolved by acid rain so

much that they are not recognizable(Baines 20).

There are three main things we can do to lower the amount of acid rain.

The first thing we can do is liming. Liming only cures the acidity in lakes by

neutralizing the acid. Another way we are trying to lower the acid rain

amount is the physical cleaning of coal. This is when they wash the parts of

the coal that contains the most sulfur. Another way we can stop acid rain is by

cutting the sulfur and nitrogen amounts put into our air. The main ways we

do this is cutting the amounts of cars that are on the road, and having coal

plants burn less coal and the coal they burned be cleaned.

In conclusion we must continue to follow these solutions or acid rain will

become more serious. If acid rain becomes more serious it will effect all our

natural resources twice as much as it already effects them. Acid rain will be

just another problem caused by pollution that will destroy our earth if we

dont do something about it.

Bibliography

Regan, James L. The Acid Rain Controversy

Pittsburgh, PA. Pittsburgh Press 1988.

363.73 R

(Information on how Acid Rain is destroying the world and

the controversies on how it is happening)

Lucas, Eileen Acid Rain

Chicago, Il. Childrens Press, 1991.

363.73 L

(A good book on information on how acid rain is

caused and what are its effects)

Baines, John. Conserving The Atmosphere

Austin, Texas: Steckvaughn, 1990.

363.7392 B

(An introduction to problems confronting the earths atmosphere)

Lucas, Eileen. Water : A Resource in Crisis

Chicago, IL: Childrens Press, 1991

363.73 L

(A good book on the pollution of water)

Dolan, Edward. Our Poisoned Sky

New York: Cobblehill Books, 1991

363.7392 D

(Explains How pollutants are ruining our atmosphere and what is being done

about them)

National Geographic Vol. 160 No. 5

Acid rain How Great a Menace Labastille, Anna

Washington DC National Geographic Society, 1981

(A good article on how acid rain can effect our environment)

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