The concentration of the atmosphere's main greenhouse gases specifically, carbon
dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and water vapor, have increased significantly during the
industrial age. These high concentrations are predicted to continue in the atmosphere for thousands of years to come. This increase in specially carbon dioxide, increases the
infrared energy taken in by the atmosphere, and warming the earth's surface. The Global
mean temperature over the past 150 years has risen between 0.3 degrees C and 0.6
degrees C. Climate changes that have been predicted are based on the continual rise in
Green House Gases. These changes include changes in: increase in mean surface air
temperature, increase in global mean rates of precipitation and evaporation, rising sea
level, and changes in the biosphere.
There are many causes to the rise in Green House Gases in the atmosphere. The
rise in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is largely related to the combustion of fossil fuels and cement production (Hansen). The increase in methane is do to rice cultivation, animal husbandry, biomass burning, and landfills (Kattenberg). Nitrous oxide is on the rise because of industrial sources like adipic acid and nitric acid production (Kattenberg). Other gases not mentioned above that have a small impact on the Green House Gas
proposed problem, is CFC-11 and CFC-12, these Gases are know to the public as being a
big source of warming, although catalyzing decomposition of stratospheric ozone, they
do not pose a great threat. Since the public was notified of these compounds in
refrigerants, spray propellants, and foam blowing; the atmospheric concentrations have
decreased greatly (Prather). ...
... middle of paper ...
...the past 160,000 years."
Nature, 345, 1990.
Charlson, R. J. "Climate forcing by anthropogenic aerosols." Science 255, 1992.
Douglas B. C. Global sea level rise, J. geophys. Res., 96 (C4), 6981-6992, 1991.
Hansen, J. E. (1998). Climate forcings in the industrial era. Livermore: Willams Press.
Kattenberg, A. (1996). Climate Change 1995: The Science of Climate Change.Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press.
Krabill. W. "Rapid thinning of parts of the southern Greenland ice sheet." Science 283,
Peixoto, J. P., and A. H. Oort (1992). Physics of Climate. New York: American Institute
Prather, M. P. "The ozone layer: The road not taken." Nature 381, 1996.
Wang, W. C. "Inadequacy of affective CO2 as a proxy in simulating the greenhouse effect
of other radiatively active gases." Nature 350, 1991.
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