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    Effects of coal on aquatic organisms

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    How does coal combustion affect aquatic organisms? Describe the steps, and the spheres (or systems, or media) involved. What factors influence the effects?

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    The primary effect of coal combustion is the release of CO2 into the atmosphere. This causes increased temperatures, as well as altering its chemistry. Just as the ocean is evaporated into the atmosphere, gases from the atmosphere are also incorporated into the ocean. Therefore, the increased CO2 composition in the atmosphere has had an effect on aquatic organisms. Oceans are naturally alkaline but become less alkaline as CO2 levels increase. This lowers the concentration of carbonate ions, making it increasingly difficult for many marine organisms to create skeletal structures. Coral, for example, is greatly affected because it must build faster than erosion can wear it away in order to create reefs. Many other calcifying organisms form the bottom ...

    Solution Summary

    The expert examines the effects of coal on aquatic organisms. The steps and spheres involved are given. The factor influence effects are determined.