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Acid Rain and its effect on Climate Change by City Tech Blogger Terence Cox

Since the industrial revolution in the mid-1900’s many changes have been happening to the Earth; the weather is becoming unpredictable, the temperature is climbing, and acidic rainfall is occurring more often. Acidic rain is simply rain that contains a very low pH level, sometimes being as low as 4 on the pH scale which is like your average soda (Cola). Acidic rain is caused by excess air pollution in the atmosphere like sulfur and nitrogen-oxides which are by-products of the industrial revolution. Acid rain shares a few similarities to climate change because they are both an effect, caused by the release of more pollutants in the atmosphere; because of this the same solution to reduce climate change would also help reduce acidic precipitation.

The effects of Acidic Rain are more serious to forestlands and natural habitats than to us humans, for instance, human skin can protect against acidic rain as the rain isn’t concentrated enough to do damage, but if it was to rain long enough for acidic deposits to clump up and dry, when those deposits become airborne, breathing it can cause lung and heart problems. Another effect Acidic Rain has on humanity is the structures we’ve made; acidic rain can corrode copper, steel, limestone, and other common building materials, weakening and damaging property. For forest and aquatic habitats, this rain can have a massive effect since such habitats rely on a special pH balance for certain organisms to thrive, especially in ponds and lakes that contain fish and their eggs; these animals are sensitive and may die when the pH balance is tampered with. There is no real benefit from acid rain because it contains an abundance of chemicals that most organisms can’t use, so it’s a waste product that must be dealt with by the ecosystem.

Acid Rain may also become another causing factor of climate change since it weakens and disrupts forests and plantations; if the forest becomes weakened it will not perform well when consuming carbon dioxide and producing oxygen which will lead to a higher density in the Green House Gas carbon dioxide. Both climate change and acid rain stem from humanity’s production and release of Green House Gases into the atmosphere; if we were to stop releasing it and move on to better options for producing energy, we would mitigate this problem.

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