Acid rain is rain or any other form of precipitation that is unusually acidic. It has harmful
effects on plants, aquatic animals, and infrastructure. Acid rain is mostly caused by human
emissions of sulfur and nitrogen compounds which react in the atmosphere to produce
acids. In recent years, many governments have introduced laws to reduce these emissions.

"Acid rain" is a popular term referring to the deposition of wet (rain, snow, sleet, fog and
cloudwater, dew) and dry (acidifying particles and gases) acidic components. A more
accurate term is “acid deposition”. Distilled water, which contains no carbon dioxide, has a
neutral pH of 7. Liquids with a pH less than 7 are acidic, and those with a pH greater than 7
are bases. “Clean” or unpolluted rain has a slightly acidic pH of about 5.2, because carbon
dioxide and water in the air react together to form carbonic acid, a weak acid (pH 5.6 in
distilled water), but unpolluted rain also contains other chemicals.

H2O (l) + CO2 (g) → H2CO3 (aq)
Carbonic acid then can ionize in water forming low concentrations of hydronium and
carbonate ions:

2 H2O (l) + H2CO3 (aq)  CO32− (aq) + 2 H3O+ (aq)


Source: Wikipedia
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