What are the causes of Acid Rain ?
Impacts of acid rain, which is a transboundary phenomenon, on the environment are majorly negative. To control and reduce these negative impacts of acid rains, it is important to minimize the factors that lead to their formation.
Factors that play a role in the formation of acid rain include both:
- Natural Sources
- Man-made sources
However, the major cause revolves around the combustion of fossil fuels which directly results in air pollution by emitting
- SO2 (Sulphur Dioxide)
- NOx (Nitrogen Oxides)
Causes of Acid Rains
1. Natural Sources
- Volanic Emissions are the major natural cause for the formation of acid rain. These emissions contain acid producing gases which when mixed with rain or any other forms of precipitation result in concentration acidic components.
- Air borne pollutants are also generated with decaying vegetation, wildfires and other biological processes within the environment also that result in acid rain.
- Nitric Oxides are naturally produced during lighting strikes that react with water molecules via electrical activity to produce nitric acid, thereby forming acid rain.
2. Man-made sources
Any human activities that result in the emissions of air borne pollutants (SO2 and NOx) are the primary causes of acid rain. Some such sources for these emissions are:
- Power Generation Facilities (Mainly Thermal Power Plants)
- Burning of waste items