Today’s Video of the Day from the American Chemical Society reveals that anhydrous ammonia is actually responsible for 50 percent of the food on our table.
The Reactions video explores why anhydrous ammonia is so vital to our food supply, and why we use it when it is potentially dangerous.
“Anhydrous ammonia can cause headline-grabbing disasters, but it’s also responsible for 50% of the food on your table,” reports ACS. “It all boils down to nitrogen and the process of turning the inert dinitrogen in our air into useful fertilizer.”
Ammonia is a toxic gas or liquid that is corrosive to tissues upon contact. Exposure to ammonia can be fatal, and even small amounts of anhydrous ammonia can cause serious burning in the eyes, nose, and throat. Higher levels of exposure can lead to death from a swollen throat or chemical burns to the lungs.
Anhydrous ammonia is a widely available fertilizer that is used on farms around the world. It is primarily used as a fertilizer source of nitrogen, which is needed for plant growth, development and reproduction.
The American Chemical Society (ACS) is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. ACS’ mission is to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Earth and all its people.
Video & Image Credit: American Chemical Society
By Chrissy Sexton, Earth.com Staff Writer