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Acidification in a number of lakes in western Sweden reached a maximum during the middle of the 1970s, with sulfate concentrations of 270-290 μeq/l and pH values of 4.4-4.5. Between 1977 and 1983 this trend was reversed, and decreases in the concentrations of sulfate and hydrogen ions were observed. The reason for this partial improvement, corresponding to a maximum of 0.3-0.4 pH units, was a decrease in sulfate loading. However, increased acidity in wet deposition counteracted, to some degree, the improvements obtained by reduced sulfate concentrations. The increased acidity of precipitation may be a result of increased emissions of nitrous oxides.
Ambio © 1985 Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences