Here are the main effects of acid rain in our environments. Acidification of surface waters is the immediate effect of acid rain. The soil microbes, biological activity, and soil chemical compositions such as the soil pH are usually damaged or altered due to the effects of acid rain. (And Process of Formation), How Were the Himalayas Formed? from acid rain, but in turn it has been significantly decreased due to the rain. Acid rain influences soil chemistry, plant activities, and the acidity of surface waters in general. Her passion for science education drove her to start EarthEclipse with the sole objective of finding and sharing fun and interesting science facts. Although the effects of pollution on structures were noted in the 1600s, the relationship between atmospheric pollution and the acid rain it produces was first brought to attention in 1852 in Manchester, England. Many forests, streams, and lakes that experience acid rain don’t suffer effects because the soil in those areas can buffer the acid rain by neutralizing the acidity in the rainwater flowing through it. Much of the effects depend on the presence of acidic depositions in the atmosphere and the acidity levels in the different forms of precipitation. It causes respiratory issues in animals and humans. For example, nitrogen pollution in our coastal waters is partially responsible for declining fish and shellfish populations in some areas. At lower pH levels, some adult fish die. Some rivers and brooks have also been reduced while some completely eliminated owing to excess acid rain. This effect has damaged buildings, gravestones, statues and historic monuments. Acid rain also removes minerals and nutrients from the soil that trees need to grow. Walking in acid rain, or even swimming in a lake affected by acid rain, is no more dangerous to humans than walking in normal rain or swimming in non-acidic lakes. Some lakes, rivers and streams in China, North America, and Europe have become highly acidic to an extent that they cannot support any life forms, creating what is termed as “dead zones.”. In areas such as mountainous parts of the Northeast United States, the soil is thin and lacks the ability to adequately neutralize the acid in the rain water. How do Rainbows Form? (a) Effect of acid rain in human beings: 1. For instance, the damaging effects of acid rain on soil and elevated levels of acidic dry depositions have ceaselessly damaged high altitude trees and vegetation cover since most of them are encircled by acidic fogs and clouds. The most notable effects occur on marble and limestone, which are common building materials found in many historic structures, monuments, and gravestones. Acid rain highly affects soil chemistry and biology. Not all acidic deposition is wet. As acid rain falls on trees, it can make them lose their leaves, damage their bark, and stunt their growth. Acid rain also discharges lots of aluminum into the soil around the trees that renders them incapable of taking up water. When we drink tap water contaminated with acid rain, it can damage our brains. However, when the pollutants that cause acid rain —SO2 and NOX, as well as sulfate and nitrate particles— are in the air, they can be harmful to humans. Others, however, are acid-sensitive and will be lost as the pH declines. Lakes that do not normally have a high level of acidity may temporarily experience effects of acid rain when the melting snow or downpour brings greater amounts of acidic deposition and the soil can’t buffer it. Effects . Building structures made of marble and limestone are mostly affected by acid rain as the acid eats the calcium compounds in the structures. In this sense, it means acid rain has many implications to the environment. By damaging these parts of the tree, it makes them vulnerable to disease, extreme weather, and insects. When she is not writing, she loves watching sci-fi movies on Netflix. The increase of acid rain is persistently affecting the health of humans and plants, the chemical composition of the soil, and most importantly the survival of aquatic life. The effects are commonly seen on statues, old gravestones, historic monuments, and … Buildings and structures made of marble and limestone are the ones especially damaged by acid rain due to the reactivity of the acids in the rain and the calcium compounds in the structures. Acid rain is a rain or any other form of precipitation that is unusually acidic, meaning that it has elevated levels of hydrogen ions (low pH). The consequences of this damage can be costly: In the atmosphere, SO2 and NOX gases can be transformed into sulfate and nitrate particles, while some NOX can also react with other pollutants to form ozone. The acidic particles corrode metal and cause paint and stone to deteriorate more quickly. emissions also contribute to ground level ozone, which is also harmful to, Learn more about Visibility and Regional Haze, Clean Air Status and Trends Network (CASTNET), National Atmospheric Deposition Program (NADP). In addition to agriculture and wastewater, much of the nitrogen produced by human activity that reaches coastal waters comes from the atmosphere. Acid rain, however, is on the acid end of the pH scale, with a pH that will typically range from 4.2 to 4.5. Dead or dying trees are a common sight in areas effected by acid rain. Acid rain has a tendency of altering the pH and aluminum concentrations, in turn, greatly affecting the pH concentration in surface waters and in consequence, fish and other aquatic life-forms are hugely affected. She loves writing on topics related to space, environment, chemistry, biology, geology and geography. SO2 and NOX react in the atmosphere to form fine sulfate and nitrate particles that people can inhale into their lungs. However, the dry depositions in the air that form acid rain can negatively impact human health by causing respiratory problems and difficulty in breathing when inhaled. All Rights Reserved . As a result, it has led to weathering of buildings, corrosion of metals, and peeling of paints on surfaces. Some governments have made efforts since the 1970s to reduce the release of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide into the atmosphere with positive result… Some of the adverse effects of acid rain are as follows: Acid rain may cause extensive damage to materials and terrestrial ecosystems such as water, fish, vegetation, soils, building etc. Acid rain is caused by emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide, which react with the water molecules in the atmosphereto produce acids. Rocky areas with thin topsoil are particularly apt to be damaged by acid rain. The soil needs to maintain an optimum pH value for biological activities to flourish. It washes away all nutrients which are required for the growth and survival of plants. Rivers, brooks, lakes, and oceans have greatly become acidic as a result of acid rain when it precipitates over these surface waters. Acid rain has corrosive effects because it eats into metals and stone. In Germany, there is an area called black forest which acquired the name because acid rain made the trees shed all their leaves and are now only black stems and branches. Headaches and irritations of the nose, throat and eyes are some of the mild implications. 4 Major Ill Effects of Conventional Cigarette Smoking on the Environment and Human Health. Acid rain, which often falls far from the source of pollution, kills trees, makes lakes unfit for fish, and even dissolves the stone in buildings and monuments. Acid rain leads to weathering of buildings, corrosion of metals, and peeling of paints on surfaces. C… (And Which Foods to Avoid), Can Squirrels Eat Raisins? Acid rain penetrates into the soil and dissolves the most vital nutrients needed by trees. At pH 5, most fish eggs cannot hatch. Sensitive soil microorganisms that cannot adapt to the changes in pH are thus killed while at the same time enzymes for soil microbes are denatured. Acid rain affects agriculture by the way how it alters the composition of the soil. Normal acidity of rain water is 5.6 H20 (1) + C02 (g) H2C03 (aq) Because of S02 & N02 gases as pollutants in atmosphere. Not all fish, shellfish, or the insects that they eat can tolerate the same amount of acid. Consistent and high levels of acid rain can drastically depreciate the overall plant life activities and aquatic life continuity.

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