Acid rain affecting wildlife in Quad Cities area
Could the rainwater that help our plants thrive be detrimental to the wildlife in our area?
Monday, March 21, 2011 - 14:37
Rain. A necessary occurrence on Earth that helps maintain the balance of plant and animal life. Yet acid rain, when mixed with nitric and sulfuric acid and the pollution from burning coal, damages buildings and other structures. Burning coal and other fossil fuels are two examples of activities that increase the acidity in our rainwater.
Acid rain causes major damage in cities. It affects life in water and on land. Rainwater acidity devastates aquatic populations, decreasing biodiversity. Young species cannot survive in acidic environments; most fish eggs, at a pH of 5, cannot hatch. Fish that have made it to adulthood often die as the acidity of their environment increases.
With the Mississippi River right in our backyard, we must carefully monitor our energy consumption in the Quad Cities area in order to protect these species and our environment.
Anytime we use energy, we release pollutants into our atmosphere that alter the acidity of rain. Simple acts could limit the amount of fossil fuels released into our atmosphere:
1) Only run the washing machine or dishwasher with a full load.
2) Turn off the hot water tank when vacationing.
3) Carpool with friends.
4) Make sure that our vehicle's air conditioning system isn't leaking.
5) Turn off the lights in empty rooms or when away from home.
These simple acts are just a few of the countless green steps we can all take to help maintain hospitable environments for land and aquatic life.
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