• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Causes of Acid Rain

Extracts from this document...


Causes of Acid Rain Emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides are the leading causes of acid rain. These toxins, a weaker form of automobile battery acid, arise from the use of coal in the production of electricity, base-metal smelting, and fuel combustion in vehicles. These emissions are converted to nitric acid and sulfuric acid. Electric utility plants, as seen in this picture from the EPA, account for about 70% of annual SO2 emissions and 30% of NOx emissions in the United States. The emissions then dissolve into the water of the atmosphere. This water is carried long distances by winds and then returned to Earth as rain, fog, or snow. ...read more.


This chart shows the different levels of acidity that certain lifeforms can handle. Even for those like the frog that can handle a really low pH, they eat the mayflies, which cannot handle much acid. As its food sources die off, the frog will be soon to follow. In addition, nitrogen causes major problems by inducing eutrophication. This is the depletion of oxygen in water, which seriously affects fish. Some lakes and streams can become naturally acidic from surrounding soils. However, according to the National Surface Water Survey (NSWS), acid rain is the cause in 75% of the bodies of water with high acidity. ...read more.


Other than the monetary setbacks, our nation will suffer from loss of its heritage. In the East where our country was born, acid rain is at its worst and is destroying our national monuments. PUBLIC HEALTH Public health is affected by acid rain through both the water and the atmosphere. When the pH of soil decreases, the mobility of metallic compounds such as aluminum and mercury are increased, making them easily transported into the water system. This can lead to the contamination of not only the water, which may be used for drinking, but also to the contamination of edible fish. Suspended atmospheric sulfates may produce respiratory diseases including lung disorders, asthma, and bronchitis. In 1981, 10.2%-13.2% of deaths of white adults were caused from exposure to atmospheric sulfates! ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Aqueous Chemistry section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Aqueous Chemistry essays

  1. Acid Rain

    so the plants can no longer breath leading to a termination of plant growth. Toxic metals are further harmful to human health and high lead levels may harm people who drink the acidic water. Acid rain, acid fog and acid vapour damages the surface of leaves and needles, reducing a

  2. The effect of Acid Rain on Seed Germination.

    Control variable: I will need to keep a number of important factors constant for my results to be very accurate and reliable. The levels of light will need to be kept constant so that the seeds all receive the same treatment and my results will be as precise as possible.

  1. Formation and Effects of Acid Rain.

    Acid rain is defiantly a global problem. This is because the wind takes away the clouds that contain the acid and send them to another country/nation. This means that the country that produces the acid rain is causing damage to another country. Countries in Europe such as the UK and Germany produce vast amounts of sulphur; however,

  2. Acid rain in Europe

    In the short term some of the environmental damage can be repaired one way of doing this is adding calcium in the form of lime to lakes affected by acid rain this neutralises the acid. In the long term reduce the amount of pollution from burning fossil fuels however due

  1. Acid Rain

    dioxide and nitrous oxides that are responsible for acid rain increase problems such as asthma and coughs. They can also cause headaches irritation (swelling and redness) of the eyes, nose and throat. Acid rain also causes millions of pounds worth of damage to buildings and structure to the country each year.

  2. Acid Rain

    When carbon monoxide enters your body, it goes into the bloodstream. When this happens, it will slow down the delivery of oxygen to the rest of the body, causing dizziness, headaches, and fatigue. Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC's) are the chemicals that are used in industry, refrigeration, air conditioning systems, and consumer products.

  1. Acid Rain.

    were being found. It was at this time that scientist began to search for the reason. As the scientists continued to work they found many piles of dead fish, up to 5000 in one pile, further up the river. Divers were sent in to examine the bottom of the rivers.

  2. Acid Rain

    Similar to surface water acidification, many soils have a natural buffering capacity and are able to neutralize acid inputs. In general, soils that have a lot of lime are better at neutralizing acids than those that are made up of siliceous sand or weathered acidic bedrock.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work