Tar is the common name for the resinous, partially combusted particulate matter made by the burning of tobacco and other plant material in the act of smoking. Democracy and science can be powerful partners for the public good—and both are under attack. Environmental impacts of tar sands. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. When surface mining is used, the wastewater ends up in toxic storage ponds. Here are a few facts about how it is made, as well as some examples of the different types used today. Cannabis when burned also creates biological residue that is very similar to the "tar" created by tobacco smoke. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. This causes mutations in the DNA of the cells, which leads to cancer. Our transportation system is outdated and broken—and it needs to change. Bitumen is made of hydrocarbons—the same molecules in liquid oil—and is used to produce gasoline and other petroleum products. Low-temperature tars result when Low-temperature tars result when coal, peat, lignite, or wood are carbonized at temperatures not exceeding 700 °C (1,300 °F). Pitch is the material remaining after the removal of pyridine and other distillates; it is useful in the aluminum industry for the manufacture of electrodes. 2 Brattle Square, Cambridge MA 02138, USA, Infographic: Wildfires and Climate Change, Building Equitable, Clean, and Climate-Safe Infrastructure, Ride-Hailing is a Problem for the Climate, Energy Storage Technology Will Ramp Up Renewables. For every gallon of gasoline produced by tar sands, about 5.9 gallons of freshwater are consumed during the extraction, upgrading, and refining process. A blog on science, politics, and activism. Asphalt is spread after it has been heated to the point that it has a tar-like consistency. Third-hand smoke is a relatively new concept, and researchers are still studying its possible dangers. Ride-hailing services are increasing carbon pollution. Corrections? Common extraction methods include surface mining—where the extraction site is excavated—and “in-situ” mining, where steam is used to liquefy bitumen deep underground. Much of this water is polluted by toxic substances harmful to human health and the environment. Start your monthly gift right now. The Union of Concerned Scientists is actively monitoring the coronavirus pandemic and its implications for scientific integrity. Each year, nitrogen runoff from Midwestern farms produces a large "dead zone" in the Gulf of Mexico, damaging fisheries and the people who make their living from them. Terms and conditions. When you start a Partners gift, you'll be joining a community of more than 12,000 monthly donors who make a concrete difference throughout the year.
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