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A Report on Acid Rain

Essay by   •  February 24, 2018  •  Exam  •  1,423 Words (6 Pages)  •  776 Views

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From the precise moment that man first polluted the world, from burning fossil fuels to urbanization; a chain reaction was created that brought along a mass amount of problems for future generations. Many people were unaware of the detrimental long-term effects that came along with these massive innovations. One of the many serious threats is acid rain and the majority of people did not notice the effects of this worldwide dilemma. It is now apparent that acid rain has made a significant negative impact on people’s everyday lives. Acidic precipitation impacts the environment, people, animals, and industries in the world. When fossil fuels are burned, nitrous and sulfuric gases are released into the atmosphere and these gases react with water and oxygen, therefore, making acid rain (National Geographic,2017). Acid rain comes in many forms like snow, hail, and dust particles too. (Environmental Protection Agency, N.d A) This silent killer destroys many habitats, ecosystems, wears down buildings and statues, and can contaminate many bodies of water in Canada. Acid rain is more prevalent near the eastern side of Canada and has also made a huge impact in Sudbury, Ontario. Acidic precipitation was very common in the mid-19th century due to industrialization and lack of technology and knowledge of pollution. As society reflects on the past, society need to find new solutions to minimize or eliminate carbon emissions. This giant environmental problem affects the entire world and its inhabitants and society must be united in its efforts in order for the world to succeed against this problem together.

Back in the early 1960s acid rain was prevalent in the town of Sudbury, Ontario. In Sudbury, they had found many valuable minerals and metals like copper, nickel and other alloys in their land. As a result of these findings, mining and excavation industries became very common in Sudbury. The smelting factories at that time did not have the knowledge and technology we possess today. The lack of filters in the plants released many nitrous and sulfur gases into the atmosphere, therefore, making the harmful substance called acid rain. Sudbury was hugely impacted by acid rain and all the lakes and rivers became contaminated, the aquatic life died, and natural vegetation in the region was wiped out. The lands of Sudbury became barren and looked similar to a wasteland (The Star, 2014). The long-term effects caused an imbalance in the food chain destroying the ecosystem and the food chain structure. Many of the animals starved and even died because of this epidemic. Acid precipitation corroded the buildings and structures and caused an economic impact because of costly repairs that were required. Due to the abundance of sulfuric gases in the atmosphere, people developed many harmful diseases and problems like bronchitis, asthma, and heart and lung defects (Environmental Protection Agency, N.D B). In addition, the fishing and farming industries in Sudbury were negatively impacted because of the lack of fish and the ruined crops. The introduction of this silent killer had ruined the community of Sudbury and finally environmentalists, lawmakers and scientists intervened and helped to dramatically reduce the emissions from the smelters in Sudbury during the late 1970s by the introduction of filters and scrubber systems. The increased awareness and society's commitment to protecting the environment has created a strong partnership to protect the community for future generations.

Canada has a worldwide reputation of having clean and reliable sources of water found in our local lakes and rivers. The polluting of the source water introduces many dangerous chemicals and toxins like nitrous and sulfuric acids that can be very harmful to the body. If these dangerous chemicals are put into our water sources this can be a nationwide catastrophe. If ingested a person can develop many respiratory problems like bronchitis, asthma and other lung and heart disorders (Toxic Substances Portal, 2014). To prevent this from reaching the public taps, the water would be needed to be treated in a water filtration system to take out all the harmful substances. This filtration process can be costly and time-consuming. Acid rain affects a lot of the industries like fishing and farming. As a result of this pollution, rivers and lakes will be contaminated followed by the death of all aquatic life. These harmful effects will cause the fishing industry to suffer greatly and may even go out of business. Farmers will also be hugely affected because the acidic pH of the rain will cause their crops to wither and die because of the high concentration of sulfuric acids. Many communities across Canada rely on the farming and fishing industries to provide the food and income, if not there will be poverty and famine prevalent in that affected area and people will be forced to move somewhere else. It is clear that the quick adoption of new industries can be beneficial but the impacts must be considered to protect the environment and its inhabitants.

The Canadian government responded to the problem of acid rain in different ways and also found new strategies to prevent acid rain and pollution. Acid rain's damaging effects



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