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

What is Acid Rain?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What is Acid Rain? As the name suggests, acid rain is rain which is acidic. Rain is naturally slightly acidic because of the carbon dioxide dissolved in it, and to a lesser extent from chlorine (which is derived from the salt in the sea). This gives rain a pH of around 5.0, and in some parts of the world it can be as low as 4.0 (this is typical around volcanoes, where the sulphur dioxide and hydrogen sulphide form sulphuric acid in the rain). Before the Industrial Revolution, the pH of rain was generally between 5 and 6, so the term acid rain is now used to describe rain with a pH below 5. ...read more.

Middle

This mixture forms a mild solution of sulfuric acid and nitric acid. Sunlight increases the rate of most of these reactions. Rainwater, snow, fog, and other forms of precipitation containing those mild solutions of sulfuric and nitric acids fall to earth as acid rain. Surprisingly, the effects of acid rain on trees have overshadowed the effects on people. Many toxic metals are held in the ground in compounds. However, acid rain can break down some of these compounds, freeing the metals and washing them into water sources such as rivers. In Sweden, nearly 10,000 lakes now have such high mercury concentrations that people are advised not to eat fish caught in them. ...read more.

Conclusion

The SO2 created during combustion can be absorbed if an appropriate chemical (such as limestone) is present as the fuel burns. Once the fuel has been burned, the SO2 can be removed from the exhaust gases. Most systems spray a mixture of limestone and water onto the gases. This mixture reacts with the SO2 to form gypsum, a useful building material. All these methods for reducing acid gases are expensive, and have drawbacks, so laws have been passed to force businesses to use them. The best way to reduce them is not to use as much energy in the first place. ?? ?? ?? ?? David McClure Cause and Effect Paper 05/02/07 ...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. The effect of Acid Rain on Seed Germination.

    I tested twenty cress seeds in a warm environment with no oxygen or light limitations but a limited amount of water. I did this by merely soaking the seeds in water before placing them inside the Petri-dish. I tested another twenty seeds in a warm environment with 10cm� of water

  2. Acid Rain

    When trees are under such stress, they release chemicals such as terpenes, which attract the ambrosia beetle, which is a serious killer for forests. 4.3 Plant It also harms vegetation; acid rain damages the protective waxy coat of leaves. This will interrupt the evaporation of water and air exchange cycle,

  1. Acid rain is any precipitation that is acidic in nature

    Nitrogen oxides are a result of combustion at extreme high temperatures (like in car exhausts) and also chemical industries (for example, in fertilizer production). Natural process includes bacterial nitrogen-fixing action in soil, forest fires, volcanic action, and lightning, which make up five percent of nitrogen oxide emission.

  2. Acid Rain

    that will flood large amounts of low lying land including many capital city's of the world. At the present 46 million people live in areas at risk of flooding due to storm surges. Scientists estimate that a 50cm rise in sea levels would increase this number to 92 million and a one-metre rise would put 118 million lives in peril.

  1. Acid Rain.

    The problem is that acid causes difficulties the fish's reproductive system. Often fish born in acid lakes do not survive for they are born with birth defects such as twisted and deformed spinal columns. This is a sign that they are unable to extract enough calcium from the water to fully develop their bone.

  2. Water Pollution & Sewage Disposal

    Sunlight enters the Earth's atmosphere, passing through the blanket of greenhouse gases. As it reaches the Earth's surface, land, water, and biosphere absorb the sunlight's energy. Once absorbed, this energy is sent back into the atmosphere. Some of the energy passes back into space, but much of it remains trapped

  1. Acid Rain

    HAPS can cause serious health problems like cancer, birth defects, nervous system problems, and deaths that are all due to people accidentally letting them go into the air. House and car paint as well as the manufacturing of lead batteries, fishing lures, certain parts of bullets, some ceramic ware, water pipes, and fixtures, release lead.

  2. Acid rain in Europe

    Case study: An investigation to show how acid rain is affecting Europe. What are the causes of acid rain? Acid rain was first found in Scandinavia in the late 1950's and at first it was thought to be a local problem, however, later it was discovered that the pollution was

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