It is important
Global warming has really taken effect in the world over the last century. It is the unusually rapid increase in the Earth’s average surface temperature over the past century primarily due to the greenhouse gases released as people burn fossil fuels. Global warming is due to the enhancing greenhouse gases emission and build-up in the Earth’s environment. The gases that have an influence on the atmosphere are water vapor, carbon dioxide, dinitrogen-oxide, and methane. Almost 30 percent of incoming sunlight is reflected back into space by bright surfaces like clouds and ice. In the other 70 percent, most is absorbed by the land and ocean, and the rest is absorbed by the atmosphere. The absorbed solar energy heats our planet. This absorption and radiation of heat by the atmosphere is beneficial for life on Earth. Today, the atmosphere contains more greenhouse gas molecules, so more of the infrared energy emitted by the surface ends up being absorbed by the atmosphere. By increasing the concentration of greenhouse gases, we are making Earth’s atmosphere a more efficient greenhouse. Climate has cooled and warmed throughout the Earth history for various reasons. Rapid warming like we see today is unusual in the history of our planet. Some of the factors that have an effect on climate, like volcanic eruptions and changes in the amount of solar energy, are natural. Climate can change if there is a change in the amount of solar energy that gets to the Earth. Volcano eruptions can really affect climate, because when it erupts it spews out more than just lava and ash. Volcanoes release tiny particles made of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere. These particles get into the stratosphere and reflect solar radiation back out to space. Snow and ice also have a great effect on climate. When snow and ice melts Earth’s climate warms, less energy is reflected and this causes even more warming. There are many different ways that plants, animals, and other life on our planet can affect climate. Some can produce greenhouse gases that trap heat and aid global warming through the greenhouse effect. Carbon dioxide is taken out of the atmosphere by plants as they make their food by photosynthesis. During the night, plants release some carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere. Methane is made while farm animals, such as cattle and sheep digest their food. Cars and trucks can effect climate by releasing carbon dioxide when fossil fuels are burned to power them. When wildfires occur, carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere. However, if a forest of similar size grows again, about the same amount of carbon that was added to the atmosphere during the fire will be removed. Some effects that scientists have predicted in the past would result when global change was occurring: loss of sea ice, accelerated sea level rise, and more intense heat waves. Scientists have confidence that global temperatures will continue to rise for decades to come, largely due to greenhouse gases produced by human activities.