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The process by which acids are added to a water body or soil, causing a decrease in buffering capacity and leading to a significant decrease in pH that may lead to the water body or soil becoming acidic (having a pH less than 7.0). This is a common form of water pollution, and when pH drops below about 6.5 it damages aquatic ecosystems. For sensitive organisms the chemical threshold of acid water is about pH 5.5 (zero alkalinity); below this many aquatic species disappear from the waterbody.

Subjects: Environmental Science.

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