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Water properties: pH

No, you don't often hear your local news broadcaster say "Folks, today's pH value of Dryville Creek is 6.3"! But pH is an important measurement of water. Maybe for a science project you have taken the pH of water samples in your chemistry class. Geological Survey we take a pH measurement whenever water is studied. Not only does the pH of a stream affect organisms living in the water, a changing pH in a stream can be an indicator of increasing pollution or some other environmental factor.

 As this diagram shows, pH ranges from 0 to 14, with 7 being neutral. pHs less than 7 are acidic while pHs greater than 7 are alkaline (basic). You can see that acid rain can be very acidic, and it can affect the environment in a negative way.