Acid Rain and Global Warming


Carbon Monoxide

  • CO
  • produced when fuel burns in a limited amount of air
  • passes into red blood cells after breathing it in
    • binds strongly to haemoglobin - which is what oxygen binds to in our blood
      • red blood cells are unable to carry a deired amount of oxygen
        • can cause tiredness, unconsciousness and even death
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Sulfur Dioxide

  • a gas with a sharp chocking smell when burned
  • dissolves in water droplets in clouds
    • makes the rain more acidic than normal
      • forms acid rain
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Acid Rain

  • damages waxy layer on leaves of trees
    • makes it mroe difficult for trees to absorb the minerals needed for healthy growth ad may die
  • makes rivers and lakes too acidic for some aquatic animals to live in
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  • can be used as biological indicators of sulfur dioxide pollution
  • grow in exposed places such as rocks or tree bark
    • they easily absorb water and nutrients
      • rainwater contains just enough nutrients to keep them alive
        • air pollutants dissolved in rainwater (especially sulfur dioide) can damage lichens and prevent them from growing
          • makes lichens natural indicators of air pollution
            • for example
              • bushy lichens need really clean air
              • leafy lichens can survive a small amount of air pollution
              • crusty lichens can survive in more polluted air
              • places where no lichens are growing is often a sign that the air is highly pollted with sulfur dioxide
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Greenhouse Gases

  • absorb heat energy and prevent it escaping into space
    • keeps the Earth warmer than it would be without these gases
    • too much of them in the atmosphere leads to an increase in the greenhouse effect and global warming
  • some of the most important greenhouse gases
    • wtaer vapour - H2O
    • carbon dioxide - CO2
    • methane - CH4
    • nitrous oxide - N2O
    • CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons)
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The Greenhouse Effect

  • process of how the greenhouse effect works
    • sunlight passes through the Earth's atmosphere
    • the ground warms up and heat is emmitted from the Earth's surface
    • some heat escapes into space but some is absorbed by greenhouse gases, it is re-emitted and does not escape
    • the Earth's atmosphere warms up
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  • farming causes the production of methane and nitrous oxide
    • rice paddy fields and cattle produce methane
      • as the number of rice fields and cattles increase, the amount of methane in the atmosphere increase as well
    • nitrous oxide is rduced from family waste and as a result of using fertilizers for crops
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Using Fuels

  • fossil fuels can produce carbon dioxide when burned
  • deforestation is happening
    • fewer trees to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere for photosynthesis
  • additional carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere if trees are bruned or left to rot
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Carbon Dioxide

  • carbon dioxide emissions from human activities have increased the amount of this gas in the atmosphere
  • carbon dioxide in the atmosphere
    • the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was 0.028% before the start of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th century
    • since then, the concentration has risen rapidly, it reached 0.040% in mid-2013
  • global average temperature
    • there is a trend for the average temperature to rise
  • the general increase in global average temperature follows a similar trend to the percentage of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere
    • does not show a relationship
      • taking account of other data, the scientific opinion shoes that the resultf from the two groups are linked 
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Global Warming

  • a rise of just a few degrees in world temperatures will have a dramatic impact on the climate
    • global weather patterns will change
    • polar ice caps will melt
  • climate change will cause drought in some places and flooding in others
    • increased sea levels from warming oceans and melting glaciers will cause increased coastal erosion and flooding of low-lying land
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  • recycling can reduce the amount of waste and pollution in the environment
  • many materials can be recycled, including
    • glass
      • can be melted and remolded
      • less energy is needed to do this than to make new glass from its raw materials
      • different coloured glass must be sorted and transported to the recycling plant
    • metal
      • takes less energy to melt and remould metals than it does to extract new metals from their ores
      • a lot of metals are alloys
        • difficult to sort for recycling
    • paper
      • can be easily recycled
      • takes less energy than making paper from trees
      • paper can only be recycled a few times before its fibres become too short to be useful
    • plastic
      • recycling plastic helps conserve crude oil, which is the raw material for making plastics and is non-renewable
      • different types of plastics have to be sorted before recycling
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