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Imagine that you are dying, simply because you ate a fish. This death is a result of acid rain. Acid rain is a silent murder in today’s ecosystems. The effects of acid rain on the ecosystem can be deadly.
Acid rain is all the rain, snow, mist that falls from the sky onto our planet that contains an unnatural low pH level. It is not to be confused with uncontaminated rain that falls, for that rain is naturally slightly acidic. This acid rain is a product of today’s industry. When products are manufactured, many chemicals are used to create it. However, because of the difficulty and cost of properly disposing these products, they are often emitted into the atmosphere with little or no treatment.
The term was first considered to be important about twenty years ago when scientists in Sweden and Norway first believed that acid rain may be causing great ecological damage to the planet. By the time the scientist found the problem, it was already very large. Detecting an acidic lake is often quite difficult. A lake does not become acidic over night. It happens over a period of many years, some times even decades. The changes are usually too gradual to be noticed early on.
At the beginning of the 20th century most rivers and lakes, like the river Tovdal in Norway, had not yet begun to die. By 1926, local inspectors began to notice that many of the lakes were beginning to show signs of serious problems. Fish were found dead along many river banks. As winter’s ice began to melt, hundreds upon hundreds of dead fish (trout in particular) were found. It was at this time that scientist, began to search for the reason. As the scientists continued to work, they found many piles of dead fish, up to 5,000 in one pile. Divers were sent in to examine the bottom of the rivers. They found many more dead fish. Many live and dead specimens were taken back to numerous labs across Norway. When the live specimens were examined they were found t...
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