What are the major sources of sulfur dioxide and why is it dangerous?

1 Answer
Jul 18, 2015

The major sources of sulfur dioxide are electrical power plants and ore smelting operations.


The major sources of sulfur dioxide are

  • Electrical power plants that burn fossil fuels containing sulfur
  • Smelting of mineral ores
  • Burning of sulfur-containing fuels by locomotives, ships, and large equipment
  • Sour gas processing
  • Oil sands production

This power plant appears to be a serious emitter of atmospheric pollutants.

Power Plant
(from www.solarroadways.com)

The health and environmental effects of acid rain are serious.

Health Effects:

  • It irritates the nose, throat, and airways, causing coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath.

Environmental Effects:

Sulfur dioxide is a major contributor to acid rain. It

  • Decreases the growth rate of crops and turns tree leaves yellow
  • Makes lake waters acidic and toxic to aquatic animals
  • Depletes soil nutrients
  • Corrodes metal, building materials, and statues

Here's an example of what acid rain can do to a statue.

(from archive.thedailystar.net)