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 1. Pollutants accumulate in the air

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Posts : 191
Join date : 2008-09-24

PostSubject: 1. Pollutants accumulate in the air   03/03/09, 10:54 pm

o Human actions are important to the biosphere
o Each year, humans add synthetic chemicals and materials to the Earth
o Pollution- describes any undesirable factor, or pollutant, that is added to the air, water, or soil
o Pollution can be from microscopic air particles to garbage
o The most common waste pollutants are from burning of fossil fuels like gas and oil
o Smog- a type of air pollution caused by the interaction of sunlight with pollutants produced by fossil fuel emissions
o Particulates + Ground-level ozone = SMOG
o Particulates- microscopic bits of dust, metal, and unburned fuel, 1-10 microns in size, that are produced by many industrial purposes
o Can stay in the air for weeks, can get inhaled and cause health problems
o Ground level ozone- in sunlight, two chemicals react to make ground level ozone
o Acid rain- a type of precipitation produced when pollutants in the water cycle cause rain pH to drop below normal levels
o All rain is slightly acidic, a pH of about 5.6, but acid rain has a lower pH
o This can hurt the ecosystems in the bodies of water the rain falls into, make growth rates decline, and cause plants to break down faster and become vulnerable to disease and weather
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