Saturday, January 14, 2012

Acid Rain: A Problem Which Concerns Us All

The United States and Canada suffer greatly from acid rain because of the inability of the soil to neutralize the acidity naturally, lacking alkalinity. The soil of Canada is in a great part made of rock which does not help to neutralize acid rain. The damages caused by acid rain continue in part to the lack of a natural ability to cleanse itself. One solution then is to diminish the creation and emission of acid rain.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency has been commissioned to achieve sufficient environmental health conditions for everyone. They have the mission of reducing the emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides in the atmosphere, two major of pollutants found in acid rain. This change will not come at a low price. The cost is so big that the government and businesses will need to work together to accomplish it. More accessible and rapid changes include cleaning out smoke stacks and exhaust pipes. Researches are being done to achieve better energy saving and finding alternative energy sources to reduce acid rain. Such alternate energy sources would be: Nuclear power, wind power, and solar energy. Everyone can start doing its little contribution by turning down their thermostat, car polling, making certain their car complies with emissions regulations, etc.

The only way the emission of acid rain will be achieved is from an international agreement. In 1984, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney made a plea to the United States Congress to help reduce the emissions from industries throughout the nation. The Unites States and Canada have been working together in a joint venture effort. In 1991, they both signed the Acid Rain Agreement. Both have agreed to accept responsibility for acid rain and continue to seek valuable solutions.

One of the ways to reduce acid rain is for the manufacturers to reduce the amount of pollutants by cleaning coal before burning it. Sulfur is greatly reduced if not eliminated by cleaning and crushing the coal. This process is expensive and takes long. Companies will need to play their part if they want to diminish acid rain. It is the role of our governments to make certain the rules and laws to reduce acid rain are respected.

In areas where acid rain is prevalent, respiratory problems are more common. People present with more asthma, dry cough, headaches, and irritations in the eyes, nose, and throat. As a result of great health concerns, the United States and Canada signed the Air Quality Agreement in 1991. The purpose of the agreement is to reduce the effects of acid rain. It will require an every day effort to change our polluting habits and come to a solution to acid rain.

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