Microsoft PowerPoint - Chapter 6 Lecture1

Microsoft PowerPoint - Chapter 6 Lecture1 - Chapter 6:...

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Chapter 6: Neutralizing the Threat of Acid Rain Is normal rain acidic? Is acid rain worse in some parts of the country? Is there a way to “neutralize” acid rain? Little Known Players in our Atmosphere • Ever heard of CO 2 ? • Of Course! • How about O 2 ? • You bet! • OK, what about N 2 ? • Yeah, kinda… Nitrogen Compounds in our Atmosphere • Nitrogen makes up almost 80% of our atmosphere • It is very reactive and combines with Oxygen in many different ways • As a result, our atmosphere abounds in all sorts of Nitrogen Oxides and ammonia • NO, NO 2 , NH 3 , NO 3 • These come from many places Nitrogen Compounds in our Atmosphere – Where do they come from? • NO, later forms NO 2 and comes from nothing more than high heat – brush fires, jet engines and so on • NH 3 and NH 4 NO 3 (ammonia and ammonium nitrate) come from fertilizer • They also come from catalytic converters, burning biomass and industrial processes • All of these can be found in our ground water, rivers, streams and aquifers • And rain! Why do we care about Nitrogen Compounds in our Atmosphere? • Nitrogen compounds combine with water in the atmosphere to form acids that fall to the earth in the form of ACID RAIN Acid Rain • Acid rain was first reported in 1852 by a British chemist Robert Angus Smith • He wrote a book about it, but it wasn’t a best seller and his work fell into obscurity • Concerns about acid rain languished until 1950, when scientists in the U.S., Scandinavia and the English Lake District rediscovered its’ effects.
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Acid Rain • Damage reports proliferated rapidly over the next three decades • Dozens of books, scientific papers and popular articles discussed acid rain damage • Lakes in Norway and Sweden were said to be “dead” with no living things • Historic Landmarks were eroding – imagine gargoyles without noses! Fig. 6.18 Acid Rain and Nitrogen Compounds • It is widely believed that Nitrogen compounds in the atmosphere are the principal contributor to acid rain • It has been said that nitrogen emissions are a far greater danger to global welfare than carbon emissions • A noted biologist said “ This one could be even worse. • Is he right? • We shall see… Acid Rain and Nitrogen Compounds • But, can we talk about acid rain without talking about acids? • There can be no understanding of acid
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This note was uploaded on 11/08/2009 for the course CH 53455 taught by Professor Rowland during the Fall '09 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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Microsoft PowerPoint - Chapter 6 Lecture1 - Chapter 6:...

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