Greenhouse gases reflect radiation from the Earth and stop it from being lost into space. This causes the Earth's temperature to be higher than it would be without greenhouse gases. The name for this is the "greenhouse effect."
Most greenhouse gases are natural - water vapor is the most common, and causes most of the greenhouse effect on Earth. Other greenhouse gases are carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, Chlorofluorocarbon and ozone. A natural greenhouse effect is not bad. Without greenhouse gases, the earth would be on average 33 degrees Celsius colder, and life would probably not be possible on Earth for heat is important for life forms.
However, humans are adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. Mainstream Science believes that this has caused the planet's average temperature to rise by causing the greenhouse effect. The most important greenhouse gas that humans add to the atmosphere is carbon dioxide which there is less than 1% in the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide is released when people burn fossil fuels, like oil, coal, and natural gas. Carbon dioxide emissions come mostly from transportation, energy and industries. Among these, the largest contributor is from meat production. The Food and Agriculture Organization said emissions associated with livestock added up to 7.1 gigatonnes (GT) of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-eq) per year – or 14.5% of all human-caused greenhouse releases. This exceeds the 13% that comes from global transport (including all cars and planes) each year.
Water vapour is the most abundant of these gases but merely reacts to climate change. In other words, when the atmosphere is warm, there is more water vapour. Thus there is a higher possibility of clouds and precipitation.
In addition to burning fossil fuels, human beings reduce the planets absorption of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by cutting down trees.We also add methane to the atmosphere by raising cattle and other farm animals, such as geese, turkeys, pigs, chickens, and sheep. Scientists have shown that producing 1 kg of beef results in more CO2 emissions than going for a three-hour drive while leaving all the lights on at home. Additionally, human activity adds water vapor to the atmosphere through increased evaporation by the use of cooling towers in thermal cycle power plants or creation of artificial lakes. These activities contribute to global warming.
Although global warming is a world wide danger, there are some proof and evidence that global warming would be occurring with or without humans creating greenhouse gas emissions. This is because there are natural causes that us humans have no control over. These include: the sun spots are exploding therefore raising the heat, large eruptions in the major volcanoes on the earth which increases gases and this is damaging plants, the orbit the Earth takes has changed - movement to or from the sun, the Earth is different when compared to how it sits near the sun -changes the temperature up or down, meteors caused explosions as they made contact with the Earth. Earth's absorption of solar radiation and heat energy that is emitted by the sun. This in turn will make temperature rise and get higher on the top surfaces of the earth.
References[change | edit source]
Other websites[change | edit source]
- The Climate Change Guide easy-to-understand information on the Greenhouse gases