• anonymous
Rain water has always been somewhat acidic.
Earth Sciences
  • Stacey Warren - Expert
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  • schrodinger
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  • anonymous
True or False?
  • spacemountain
True. This is the reason why we don't drink rain water because the rain water is acidic.
  • e.mccormick
@spacemountain You have some issues with your statements. While it is true that rain water is acidic, the rest of your reasoning is flawed. They used to drink rain water all the time. Caught it in barrels for that purpose. In fact, the carbonated water in soda is a stronger form of the type of acid rain most commonly contains. That is carbonic acid. Now, the presence of sulfur in many things we burned caused changes in the type of acid. Many fossil fuels release sulfur dioxide. This mixes with the water molecules, nitrogen, etc. and makes a weak sulfuric acid. Though weak, it is still a lot stronger than carbonic acid and much more damaging. But that has little to do with why rain water comes out a bit on the acidic side unless you distill it. Just blowing water into the air can cause the pH to become more acidic. Ground water can also be acidic, my father had a well that needs the acidity removed because it is a little too low a pH. However, it is usually more basic. This is due to the wider range of minerals in the ground and types of chemistry that happen when water filters through soils hat contain large volumes of calcium. It is because we largely use ground water that our taps are usually more basic. Also, we like to filter out stronger acids because they break down pipes more. But tap water is perfectly fine from a pH of 6.5 (acidic) to 8.5 (basic).

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