Erosion & Weathering

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Corrosion is a process by which a chemical reaction eats away at a metal. An example of a chemical reaction that causes corrosion is the oxidation of iron by water in an electrolytic process. The product of this reaction is rust.

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  • What is corrosion?

    Q: What is corrosion?

    A: Corrosion is a process by which a chemical reaction eats away at a metal. An example of a chemical reaction that causes corrosion is the oxidation of iron by water in an electrolytic process. The product of this reaction is rust.
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  • What is glacier calving?

    Q: What is glacier calving?

    A: Glacier calving is when large chunks of ice break off the ends of glaciers into the water, becoming icebergs. Glaciers flow slowly, and their motion makes their leading ends unstable and causes calving. The resulting icebergs can be very large, with one observed to be the size of Rhode Island.
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  • What causes a cliff to collapse?

    Q: What causes a cliff to collapse?

    A: Cliffs collapse for a number of reasons, one of the most common being the effects of weathering, but there other factors as well, such as water crashing against the cliff face, what the cliff is made out of and the climate of the area. These factors can also work in conjunction to cause a cliff to collapse.
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  • Why is acid rain a problem?

    Q: Why is acid rain a problem?

    A: Acid rain contaminates water and soil, killing microbes, insects, fish, and other aquatic wildlife and vegetation. It corrodes stone and metal, and it damages automotive paint. Although contact with acid rain is not directly harmful to people, it can indirectly cause health problems.
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  • How do avalanches occur?

    Q: How do avalanches occur?

    A: Avalanches occur when masses of snow, often with ice and debris, slide down mountain sides. They are triggered by overloading, snow pack conditions, slope angle, vibration and temperature. They gain speed and power as they draw nearer to the bottom of the slope.
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  • What is it like inside a sinkhole?

    Q: What is it like inside a sinkhole?

    A: Sinkholes occur when an underground void collapses, bringing the layers of earth and rock above it down with the collapse. The surface above the sinkhole suddenly drops, plunging anything in the area into a deep hole in the ground. Depending on the nature of the sinkhole, the bottom may be filled with water, and the sides often collapse inward and bury anything or anyone that falls in.
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  • How does freeze-thaw weathering work?

    Q: How does freeze-thaw weathering work?

    A: Freeze-thaw weathering, also known as frost weathering, is caused by water working its way deep into cracks in rock faces, expanding as it freezes and then driving deeper into the rock when it melts. Over time, this process can work large chunks of stone loose from rock faces and send the debris tumbling downhill into large scree piles.
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  • What is biological weathering?

    Q: What is biological weathering?

    A: Biological weathering is the effect that living organisms, such as plants and animals, have on rocks and other inanimate objects. This phenomena happens due to the molecular breakdown of minerals in the rock. When biological weathering occurs, the living organism breaks down the rock or other nonliving object through either mechanical or chemical erosion or the use of both.
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  • How is erosion prevented?

    Q: How is erosion prevented?

    A: There are several ways to prevent erosion, including grassing waterways, conserving tillage, covering crops, managing pastures and fortifying stream and riverbanks. Some erosion control methods, such as fortifying embankments along waterways, take place at the source, while others, such as modifying farming techniques, occur offsite. These techniques help to control and stabilize erosion on short- and long-term bases and are ideally used in combination.
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  • What effect does acid rain have on the environment?

    Q: What effect does acid rain have on the environment?

    A: Acid rain has many environmental side effects, but its impact is largely seen on water sources and aquatic environment, such as lakes, wetlands and streams, explains National Geographic. Acid rain reduces the alkalinity, the capacity of water to neutralize acid, and thus increases the acidity of the water, leading to a weaker ecosystem. Acidic water is also toxic to fish, clams, crayfish and other aquatic animals.
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  • Do deforestation and soil erosion cause floods and droughts?

    Q: Do deforestation and soil erosion cause floods and droughts?

    A: Wild Again states that deforestation can contribute to soil erosion, flooding and droughts. In many countries, there has been a marked increase of flooding in areas that have experienced deforestation.
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  • What causes coastal erosion?

    Q: What causes coastal erosion?

    A: Coastal erosion is caused by a number of factors, including natural processes such as the wind, rain and waves, as well as human activities, such as the damming of rivers. Additionally, when barrier islands are destroyed, the coastline becomes more susceptible to the destructive forces of storms and hurricanes. Barrier islands help to absorb some of these destructive forces and protect the coastline.
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  • What are the effects of urban decay?

    Q: What are the effects of urban decay?

    A: Urban decay can fragment families, cause loss of jobs, result in depopulation, promote crime, lead to loss of political privileges and contribute to deindustrialization, reports Boundless. Poverty is the main cause of urban decay. A city that falls into urban decay may recover from its social economic challenges or require rebuilding. Changes in government policies on economic activities and failure of communication and transport infrastructure contribute to urban decay.
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  • How can we stop acid rain?

    Q: How can we stop acid rain?

    A: Acid rain cannot possibly be stopped fully but can be reduced in several ways including switching fuel sources to natural gas, oil, or renewable energy sources, removing the sulfur from the coal before burning and burning it more efficiently, using fluidized-bed combustion processes to burn the coal, switching to low-sulfur coal and removing the sulfur from the smoke stack after combustion through the installation of pollution control equipment.
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  • How does gravity cause erosion?

    Q: How does gravity cause erosion?

    A: Gravity causes erosion by pulling dirt, rocks and soil downward. For example, as water mixes with dirt to form soft mud, the mud cannot support itself against the force of gravity.
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  • What is wind erosion?

    Q: What is wind erosion?

    A: By definition, wind erosion involves the erosion, transportation and deposition of soil by the wind, according to Dictionary.com. Wind erosion is often worse during dust storms. Poor farming practices by humans combined with drought conditions such as occurred during the 1930s in the United States increase wind erosion.
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  • What are some water erosion facts?

    Q: What are some water erosion facts?

    A: Water erosion occurs when moving water carries away bits of rock and dirt. There are four types of water erosion: sheet erosion, rill erosion, gully erosion and bank erosion. All of these depend on the type of land being moved by water. This type of erosion creates valleys, canyons, shorelines and cliffs.
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  • What causes a rock slide?

    Q: What causes a rock slide?

    A: A rock slide occurs when rocks sit on a sloped plane, and added weight or water causes them to slide down. Heavy rains weigh on the rocks and dirt, and also make the underlying surface slick. Clay or dirt erosion under rocks adds to the potential for a rock slide.
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  • How does running water cause erosion?

    Q: How does running water cause erosion?

    A: Running water causes erosion through friction. Additionally, running water can carry dust, silt or sand particles, which may also work to erode a given surface. Typically, water erodes surfaces in one of four ways.
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  • What are the five agents of erosion?

    Q: What are the five agents of erosion?

    A: The five agents of erosion are wind, water, ice, waves and gravity. Erosion is the process in which particles of the earth are moved by naturally occurring external forces.
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  • What is erosion?

    Q: What is erosion?

    A: Erosion is a natural process in which rocks or soil are moved from one location to another by wind or water. Material may move through erosion for distances ranging from a few feet to thousands of miles. Erosion often is most noticeable along shorelines, but it occurs in a variety of areas throughout the world.
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