As the name suggests, greenhouse gases are those kinds of gases which act as a roof or create a greenhouse effect for the earth. They trap heat on earth by forming a shield over its atmosphere. What happens is that first the greenhouse gases let the visible as well as the ultraviolet light present inside the sunlight to pass through the earth’s atmosphere and these lights then reach the surface.
But when this light hits the surface, it is reflected to the atmosphere as infrared energy or heat. The greenhouses gases then absorb this energy and heat and tend to warm the earth. To understand more about greenhouse gases and how they affect climate, you can go through the following given information.
- The greenhouses gases tend to trap the heat in the troposphere. This is that part of the atmosphere where weather changes take place. The global warming that these greenhouse gases cause also tends to affect the climate systems of the earth.
- There are many types of greenhouse gases and some of them include water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane as well as manmade ozone.
- Many centuries ago, carbon dioxide was only produced through natural processes such as exhaling of animals but these days, there are many reasons why the amount of carbon dioxide present in the air has increased and some of them include mining, deforestation, consumption of fossil fuel and an increase in population. Due to these reasons, global warming has increased and has led to climate change all across the world.
- Methane is one of the strongest absorbers of heat, even though it is present in fewer amounts in the air than carbon dioxide. Methane absorbs about 23 times the heat which is absorbed by carbon dioxide and is thus more responsible for green house effect and climate change. Methane is not only produced through natural processes but also through processes like decomposition in swamps.
- Man made ozone which too is a greenhouse gas is responsible for climate change. It is different from the natural ozone layer and is located in the troposphere close to the surface of the earth.
- Another gas which is responsible for greenhouse effect and hence climate change is nitrous oxide. This has is produced through agricultural use of fertilizer and organic compounds which are nitrogen based.
It is important to understand that climate change happens when certain elements in the atmosphere allow sunlight to pass freely. There is strong evidence related to climate change that has occurred over many decades and still continues to affect our planet.
According to reports given by National Aeronautics and space administration or NASA, the sea levels have risen about 6.7 inches in the last century and the rate of increase doubled in the last decade. Due to the rising global temperatures, oceans tend to absorb a lot of heat and these increased temperatures of water will eventually lead to destructive and stronger weather patterns.