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Acid Rain

Pollution is a big problem in our society. Our water, our land, and our air are polluted because of the things we do.

How we pollute

We pollute the water and the ground when we throw plastic, paper, glass, and other garbage on the ground or into the water instead of putting them in the trash…where they belong.

We also pollute the water and the ground when pouring chemicals into water or onto the ground—things like motor oil and gas, or when we don’t recycle the way we should.

Polluting the air is different, though. We pollute the air when we burn coal, gas, and other chemicals. The smoke or exhaust from these things travels through the air into the atmosphere and gets trapped in the clouds with the moisture that is evaporating from the earth to the clouds.

When the clouds get full of water, they empty the rain or snow back to earth along with all that dirt and pollution. This is called acid rain.

Is all rain acid rain

No, not all rain is acid rain. Acid rain is found in places where there is a lot of air pollution. This means that rain that falls in the mountains or out in the open fields or over the ocean is not acid rain. It can still have some dirt in it, but it is not polluted enough to be acid rain.

Acid rain falls in places where there is a lot of air pollution. Acid rain is the rain that has a high ph level (acid level).

What does acid rain do

So what’s so bad about a little dirt? There’s really nothing wrong with a little dirt. In fact, it’s almost impossible to avoid. But when acid rain falls to the ground and becomes part of the water source for plants, it’s not good.

Here is what you need:

  • Place the plants in a location that is ideal for their growth and mark them A, B, and C
  • Mark the jars A, B, and C
  • Fill jar A with water
  • Fill jar B 1/3 full of lemon juice and 2/3 full of water
  • Fill jar C with water and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • Water plant A with the contents of jar A, plant B with the contents of jar B, and plant C with the contents of jar C—giving each plant 2 to 3 tablespoons of water every two days

What happened:

The lemon juice, which is highly acidic (contains a lot of acids), that was present in the water was soaked up by the plant along with the water—just like the pollution in rain and groundwater is soaked up by plants.

The acid is not good for the plants. It interrupts their ability to make the glucose they need to grow and have energy.

As you can see, a little bit of acid doesn’t do nearly as much harm as a lot of acids.

What does this tell you about the importance of taking good care of our environment? What are some things you can do to help cut down on pollution?