Difference between revisions of "Greenhouse gas"

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The nature of a greenhouse gas is to pass [[visible light]], i.e., incoming energy from the sun, but to be opaque to the [[infrared]], i.e., heat energy being re-radiated outward from the earth's surface.  This functions much like the [[glass]] on a [[man-made]] [[greenhouse]], and serves to trap warmth at the surface and in the lower [[atmosphere]].
 
The nature of a greenhouse gas is to pass [[visible light]], i.e., incoming energy from the sun, but to be opaque to the [[infrared]], i.e., heat energy being re-radiated outward from the earth's surface.  This functions much like the [[glass]] on a [[man-made]] [[greenhouse]], and serves to trap warmth at the surface and in the lower [[atmosphere]].
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Some extent of greenhouse gases are necessary to maintain life at a livable temperature on Earth.
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==References==
 
==References==

Revision as of 12:15, 4 June 2009

It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with greenhouse effect. (Discuss)

A greenhouse gas is any gas which contributes to the greenhouse effect.

The most abundant greenhouse gas is water vapor;[1] see cloud cover. Also important are carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone.[2]

The level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased by about 37 percent since the start of industrialization. It is now at its highest level in at least 650,000 years.[3]

The nature of a greenhouse gas is to pass visible light, i.e., incoming energy from the sun, but to be opaque to the infrared, i.e., heat energy being re-radiated outward from the earth's surface. This functions much like the glass on a man-made greenhouse, and serves to trap warmth at the surface and in the lower atmosphere.

Some extent of greenhouse gases are necessary to maintain life at a livable temperature on Earth.


References

  1. Water vapor has the largest greenhouse effect, though since the quantity of water vapor in the atmosphere is determined primarily by the temperature it is not regarded as a climate forcing agent. (NASA)
  2. http://yosemite.epa.gov/oar/globalwarming.nsf/content/emissions.html
  3. [(Nature)]