acid rain


: rain that has increased acidity caused by environmental factors (such as atmospheric pollutants)

Examples of acid rain in a Sentence

trees damaged by acid rain
Recent Examples on the Web Combustion of high-sulfur fuels leads to the production of compounds like sulfur dioxide, which can cause respiratory problems and produce acid rain. Robert Rapier, Forbes, 28 Nov. 2023 The volcanism would have also spawned acid rain and ocean acidification. WIRED, 28 Sep. 2023 The cost-benefit ratio of desulfurization technologies was key to solving acid rain. Hannah Ritchie, Scientific American, 25 Oct. 2023 That’s what happened 250 million years ago at the end of the Permian Period, when acid rain and other fallout from volcanic eruptions killed 90 percent of the species on the planet. Matt Hrodey, Discover Magazine, 1 Nov. 2023 Experts also added that hydrochloric acid, which is the byproduct of vinyl chloride when it is burned, does not typically get picked up by air currents or create acid rain. Kalhan Rosenblatt, NBC News, 15 Aug. 2023 Vinyl chloride in the atmosphere breaks down into hydrochloric acid, a component of acid rain, according to The Enquirer. Sudiksha Kochi, USA TODAY, 19 Feb. 2023 Growing up in Zurich, Heuberger had been terrified by the environmental calamities that defined the eighties and nineties: Chernobyl, the ozone hole, acid rain. Heidi Blake, The New Yorker, 16 Oct. 2023 This movement, rooted in the 1970s, aimed to conserve the natural world and avoid consumerism with campaigns focusing on saving rainforests, curbing whaling, reducing acid rain, and addressing the hole in the ozone layer. Matthew Cockerill, Fortune, 12 Sep. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'acid rain.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1845, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of acid rain was in 1845

Dictionary Entries Near acid rain

Cite this Entry

“Acid rain.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

acid rain

: rain with increased acidity that is caused by environmental factors (as atmospheric pollutants)

Medical Definition

acid rain

: acid precipitation especially in the form of rain

More from Merriam-Webster on acid rain

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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