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The Greenhouse effect

The greenhouse effect (shown in the diagram on the right) is the trapping of the sunlight inside the earths atmosphere. Because the sun radiates heat into the atmosphere, the earth needs to radiate the same amount of heat energy back out into space. But the heat radiated out is reflected by greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane and water vapour) and reradiated back to earth. This is repeated and thus, the earth warms up and causes global warming. Primarily the greenhouse effect is caused by us burning fossil fuels in factories, deforestation and petrol and oil in cars. These things release the harmful gases into the atmosphere.

Environmental effects
The major effect this has is the earths sea level rising as the polar ice caps melt. The sea level has already risen about 4 8 inches. Because of this people will have to retreat to higher ground and eventually some low-lying cities will be flooded and would have an enormous impact on millions of people around the world. This can also increase droughts as the water evaporates more quickly. More violent storms will happen, including severe tornadoes, hurricanes and typhoons.

Solutions
We cant take CO2 directly from the atmosphere so must learn not to add any more. This means not burning any more fossil fuels by stop drive cars of planes, or burning them in factories. Or we would have to plant millions of trees to take the CO2 out and replace it with oxygen through photosynthesis.

Acid rain
Acid rain also occurs when we burn fossil fuels or. Gases like sulphur dioxide and nitrous oxides are released into the atmosphere. The gases then dissolve in the water to form more acid pollutants that we call acid rain our rain water is always slightly acidic (at a pH of 5.6) but sometimes our rain can go as low as a pH of 3.6.

Environmental effects
This affects plants, buildings and bodies of water. When acid rain gets in the soil, the plants nearby cant get the nutrients they need and the seed wont be able to germinate. Buildings made of limestone and marble are seriously affected by acid rain as the acid rain erodes them away. The rain also gets in the water and lowers its pH and makes it acidic. This can kill the fish and the insects and frogs around or in the water.

Solutions
There are quite a few solutions to this problem. Such as use low sulphur coal or use scrubbers which remove 80 to 95% of sulphur emissions. Also you can absorb SO2 with lime in the PowerStation. To stop the fishes in lakes and seas we can add lime to the water to lower its Ph. This works because lime is an alkaline which neutralises the acid.