Oct 01

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The Sierra Nevada Lakes Rebound

Since the introduction of the Clean Air Act,
less acid rain is falling in lakes in the Sierra Nevada.

Image By Dcrjsr

Transcript of the Audio Podcast:

Cleaner air means cleaner water… on this CurrentCast.

When fossil fuels are burned for energy, sulfur dioxide is released into the atmosphere, where it forms acid rain.

Jim Sickman, a Professor of Hydrology at the University of California, Riverside, used sediment cores to reconstruct acid rain’s impact on lakes in the Sierra Nevada.

He found that acidity and particles from coal combustion began accumulating in the lakes in the 1920s – a time of industrial growth. The levels for both fell in the seventies, when the Clean Air Act was introduced. Sickman says the timing is not a coincidence.

Sickman: “The efforts that we’re making in terms of controlling air pollution, more fuel efficient cars, catalytic converters – those are really bearing fruit, not only in terms of human health but in terms of environmental health.”

Jim Sickman

Support for CurrentCast comes from the Mitsubishi Corporation Foundation for the Americas. Learn more online at http://www.currentcast.org.

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