The surface of the earth interacts with solar radiation and a part of this energy is reflected back into the space by the atmosphere of the earth. A portion of this energy is spread out by the molecules in the environment and a bigger portion goes through the earth’s atmosphere and interacts with the surface of the earth. The earth’s surface then absorbs the amount of radiation resulting in global warming.
This solar radiation interacts with the atmosphere once again as it leaves the earth, and some of them go to the space, but a great amount of this energy is reflected back to the earth’s surface by molecules present in the earth’s atmosphere.
Apart from the unfavorable effects of greenhouse gases in global warming, is there any good thing that they provide?
The molecules that reflect the solar radiation back to earth are called greenhouse gases because they trap re-radiated energy like the glass in a greenhouse, but these gases are also responsible for most life on earth. If not because of these gases, the surface temperature of the earth would likely be much colder.
Greenhouse gases keep the heat in like an insulator or blanket above the earth. When the amount of these gases in the atmosphere is increased, the atmosphere’s ability to block the escape of infrared radiation is also increased resulting in thicker earth’s insulator.
Therefore, a great amount of concentrated greenhouse gases can affect the earth’s climate badly thru global warming. Any amount in excess of the minimum requirement for greenhouse concentration is not suited for human life.
A study revealed that there is human influence in attaining the balance of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Many of the greenhouse gases that include carbon dioxide and methane have long duration of stay in the atmosphere, and it could even take centuries for the atmospheric burden to exist.
The level of all greenhouse gases has been increasing and carbon dioxide has the greatest effect on global warming. The release of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to the atmosphere is made much faster due to the works of human beings. Since we are burning billions of tons per year of fossil fuels like oil, coal, natural gas, and their derivatives, then, we are causing the earth’s atmosphere to deteriorate faster. Why is this so?
That’s because the carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere through these wanton activities does not evaporate immediately or even over the period of 1 year. In fact, the duration of stay of these greenhouse gases last for decades or even centuries. It clearly means that the CO2 that we emit today has the tendency to affect the climate of the next generations thru global warming.
However, despite this threat of atmospheric deterioration thru global warming, and widespread recognition of this problem, worldwide emissions of fossil fuels continue to rise at a rate of about 1% per year. These emissions are even expected to increase further as the world moves ahead towards greater industrialization.