The Good and The Bad of Greenhouse Gases
While greenhouse gases are natural, human activities are increasing the amount and type of greenhouse gas released into the atmosphere. Increasing amounts of greenhouse gases in the environment will lead to increases in global temperatures, weather changes, sea level rise and the melting of polar ice caps. Welcome to global warming.
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Are Necessary for Life on Planet Earth
Greenhouse gases, or GHGs, are gases that are present in the atmosphere and contribute to the greenhouse effect.
The greenhouse effect is a natural process by which radiation from the sun warms Planet Earth’s surface and lower atmosphere. This causes heat to be radiated from Planet Earth at infrared wavelengths.
Greenhouse gases absorb the emitted infrared energy, trapping some of this thermal radiation in the atmosphere.
We know that greenhouse gases are essential to life on Planet Earth. Without this natural process and its effects, temperatures across Planet Earth’s surface would be significantly lower and conditions unsuitable for life would exist on Planet Earth.
Greenhouse gases trap heat in the atmosphere and help regulate our climate.
Without them, Planet Earth would be a frozen wasteland like Mars or Venus, where temperatures are far too low for liquid water to exist on the surface.
The amount of greenhouse gases in any atmosphere highly depends on geology and climate.
The more carbon dioxide in the air, the more heat is trapped and the warmer a planet will be—leading to global warming.
Ocean acidification is caused by an increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in the oceans, which makes them more acidic and reduces their ability to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
This causes a cycle of acidification as it becomes harder for marine creatures to survive because of their shells being dissolved by more acidic water. That is leading to fewer species being able to survive.
Greenhouse Gases and Our Changing Environment
Greenhouse gases are a driver of climate change. They act like the glass in a greenhouse and allow sunlight to pass through but trap warmth on Planet Earth.
They come from many natural and human-made sources, including volcanic eruptions, human, animal and plant respiration, decomposition of organic matter, and burning of fossil fuels.
Most of these gases stay in the atmosphere for only a short time.
Others, however, can circulate throughout Planet Earth’s atmosphere and create a “blanket effect” that traps heat and increases temperatures.
The greenhouse effect warms Planet Earth’s surface by a natural process. GHGs let the sun’s energy in, but they also prevent some of this heat from escaping back into space.
There are many different GHGs, but the two main ones are water vapour and carbon dioxide (CO2).
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A cap is set on the total amount of certain greenhouse gases that can be emitted by the installations covered by the system. The cap is reduced over time so that total emissions fall.
After each year, an installation must surrender enough allowances to cover fully its emissions, otherwise heavy fines are imposed.
These gases are called ‘greenhouse gases’ because they let visible light in through the atmosphere but absorb and emit infrared radiation (heat) in all directions.
This creates a blanket effect that traps heat near the surface of Planet Earth.
Ever since the industrial revolution, with the invention of steam engines and the growth of industry, greenhouse gas emissions have been increasing at an alarming rate.
In fact, scientists believe that humans have caused approximately half of all CO2 emissions since the beginning of the industrial revolution!
These increased levels of GHGs have caused temperatures to rise around 1°C since pre-industrial times.
And this has led us to more extreme weather conditions like heat waves and droughts which can cause serious damage to crops and ecosystems alike.
Carbon Dioxide Can Last in The Atmosphere for Centuries
Carbon dioxide or CO2 is one of the most common greenhouse gases emitted by human activity that contributes to climate change.
But one of the fascinating things about this gas is the amount of time it stays in the atmosphere.
According to a study done by researchers at Princeton University, carbon dioxide can remain in the atmosphere for hundreds of years before it’s finally exhaled back to Planet Earth.
Carbon dioxide is a natural part of Planet Earth’s atmosphere. A colourless, and odourless gas made up of oxygen and carbon.
Carbon dioxide is created when humans, plants and animals breathe out when volcanoes erupt, when dead things decay and when humans burn fuels like oil, coal or natural gas.
It’s also created by power plants that burn fossil fuels to generate electricity.
When carbon dioxide gets into the air it stays there for a long time because it doesn’t react with other chemicals in the atmosphere very easily.
This means that even if we stopped releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere today it would still be around for centuries to come.
The exact lifespan of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has not been determined but scientists think it could be between 100-1000 years.
If carbon is left in the atmosphere, it has the potential to heat an area and create climate change.
The Long-Term Damage of Greenhouse Gases
As a society, we naturally want to maintain and preserve the quality of our lives by making plans.
We can ensure continuity by following tradition and preserving the past. We can also predict what will happen in the future by looking at patterns in the present.
In terms of climate change, many people believe that we cannot reverse the damage that has already been inflicted on our world due to GHGs, but this may not be true—if we correct the problem soon.
The effects of greenhouse gases are already being felt. They have caused Planet Earth to warm up, which has resulted in more extreme weather events and rising sea levels.
The problem with greenhouse gasses is that they are not easy to remove from the atmosphere. The best way to reduce their impact on Planet Earth is to stop producing them in the first place.
There’s no running away from the fact that greenhouse gasses can cause irreversible damage to our planet if they continue to rise at the current rate.
People everywhere need to know about this issue so that we can work together as a community to solve it before it’s too late!
The world has been trying to fight climate change for decades, but greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise.
A report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says that if we don’t act now, we’ll have to pay the price later.
The report was written by 91 authors from 40 countries and peer-reviewed by over 600 experts.
They found that climate change is already happening, and it’s only going to get worse if we don’t act soon.
We Need a Balance with Natural Greenhouse Gases
There are natural greenhouse gases—carbon dioxide and methane for example—that act as a blanket for Planet Earth, trapping heat and making life as we know it possible.
They are also a benefit to life on Planet Earth as without them it would be too cold for plants to grow, so all plant life wouldn’t exist.
However, there must be a balance between the number of greenhouse gases present in the atmosphere, otherwise they will produce too much or not enough heat.
Over many thousands of years, there has been an equilibrium maintained between these gases and life itself.
But over the last century, industrialisation has broken this balance, especially with the burning of fossil fuels.
The world has been getting warmer for the last 50 years and this is partly because of natural greenhouse gases.
Carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) are all naturally occurring gases that help keep Planet Earth warm by trapping heat in our atmosphere.
However, we are putting too much CO2 into the atmosphere through our use of fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas.
We need to balance our use of these fuels with renewable energy sources such as solar power and wind turbines if we are going to slow down global warming.
The real question is do we have the time to fix this?
You Affect Global Warming Every Single Day
When most people think of global warming, they picture Planet Earth in the scorching future.
While the immediate future may be uncertain, the impact that your choices have on Planet Earth today is of more significance than you realise.
No matter how small or insignificant your individual choices may seem, by adding them up over millions of people, a massive collective impact is felt.
One thing I’m certain of is that you are one of the most important components in saving this beautiful planet for future generations.
Every day, you are making decisions about your actions and how they affect climate change. Some of these actions will have a direct impact, while others won’t.
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By arming yourself with knowledge, you will make better choices every day.
You may not realise it, but even the smallest things you do affect greenhouse gases. However, I’m not talking about large polluting factories and businesses.
We’re all guilty of that, too.
What I’m talking about are the day-to-day choices you make. Whether it’s the food you eat for lunch, the accessories or clothing you purchase or the home décor in your living room.
Even something as simple as flushing the toilet! In fact, most of your daily activities lead to greenhouse gases entering the atmosphere, which causes climate change.
As an individual, you don’t have the power to stop it, but you can stop yourself from exacerbating it.
Greenhouse Gases Are a Threat That’s Increasing
For many, the greenhouse effect is just a theory. Something they know of but don’t entirely believe.
When the subject comes up, most people tend to dismiss it as an action without any implications for our lives in the present or near future.
However, history proves that it is often those very things which people think are least likely to happen that do have an impact.
The concern is that the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has dramatically increased over the last century and is expected to continue to rise.
This increase in GHGs can be attributed to the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, and natural gas) for energy and transportation, as well as deforestation.
The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased by about 40% since pre-industrial times (around 1750). Over half of this increase has occurred since 1980.
As well as being a major cause of climate change, greenhouse gases are harmful to human health. They can damage the lungs, eyes, nose, and throat as well as cause heat stress and skin rashes.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says there is now clear evidence that pollutants like ozone, sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxides can cause respiratory problems such as asthma or bronchitis – especially among children and older people who have existing respiratory problems.
These pollutants are known as air pollution or fine particles.
The WHO estimates that air pollution causes about 3 million premature deaths each year worldwide.
And it’s estimated that 93% of people living in cities are exposed to air pollution above safe levels set by WHO guidelines on PM2.5 concentrations in outdoor air quality standards.
Air pollution is also linked with an increased risk of heart attacks and stroke because it aggravates existing cardiovascular conditions such as high blood pressure.
Greenhouse gases are important but there can be too much of a good thing.
As much as we hear about the dangers of greenhouse gases and how they could lead to climate change, there’s a different side to that story.
Greenhouse gases are important to all ecosystems on Planet Earth, whether they be in the ocean or on land.
It’s easy to get carried away with information and focus on the negative aspects of greenhouse gases but there needs to be a balance.
The world is facing a global warming crisis. This issue should be a top priority as it threatens to change the way we live and how we look at our planet.
Greenhouse gases are building up in the atmosphere faster than we can clean them up.
By reducing our carbon footprint and producing fewer emissions, we can slow this damage down, but we all need to be making more of an effort.
The rising temperatures are causing more extreme weather events, affecting Planet Earth’s ecosystems, and changing the way we live and work.
It’s not just humans who are impacted by climate change; animals like polar bears, penguins, and elephants are also being affected by this phenomenon.
A rise in temperature means that there will be more evaporation from both land and water areas, which leads to an increase in cloud cover and precipitation throughout Planet Earth’s atmosphere.
This leads to more extreme weather conditions such as hurricanes, tornadoes, heat waves, droughts etc., which can all have devastating effects on communities around the world.
To combat climate change, countries must come together to agree on how they are going to reduce their carbon emissions while sustaining their economies and lifestyles.
Greenhouse gases are naturally present in the atmosphere and play an important role in keeping Planet Earth warm enough to sustain life, but there is a downside.
We’ve all seen the news about greenhouse gases and climate change. The data is in, and there’s no denying that the problem exists.
More and more nations have pledged to make changes to better the environment, and hopefully, it will influence a larger scale.
But no matter what happens in the future, we all need to take personal responsibility for our actions, so we can live with a clear conscience.
But we can change things for the better, starting with our dependence on fossil fuels.