greenhouse effect


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Related to greenhouse effect: Greenhouse gases, global warming

greenhouse effect

a theorized change in the earth's climate caused by accumulation of solar heat in the earth's surface and atmosphere. Human activity contributes increasing amounts of the so-called greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide, methane, and chlorofluorocarbon, to the atmosphere. Some of the particles and gases in the atmosphere also allow more sunlight to filter through to the earth's surface but reflect much of the radiant infrared energy that otherwise would escape through the atmosphere back into space. See also global warming.

greenhouse effect

Planetary warming as a result of the trapping of solar energy beneath atmospheric gases. The composition and concentration of the gases in the atmosphere influence the earth's surface temperature because some gases more effectively retain heat than others. Fossil fuel combustion, which has increased at a rapid rate since the 1950s, has deposited increasing amounts of carbon dioxide in the upper atmosphere. This is thought to be a contributory factor in global warming, a phenomenon suspected of having widespread effects on all ecosystems. See: global warming; ozone

greenhouse effect

The progressive earth-heating effect resulting from the transparency of the atmosphere to sun (solar) radiation at high frequencies and its relative opacity to energy re-radiated by the earth at a lower, less penetrative, frequency. Water vapour and carbon dioxide are the main elements concerned, and any increase in these, mainly from the burning of fossil fuels, enhances the heating effect. A rise in surface temperature could melt polar ice and cause widespread flooding.

greenhouse effect

  1. an effect occurring in greenhouses in which the glass transmits short wavelengths but absorbs and re-radiates longer wavelengths, thus heating the interior.
  2. the application of this effect to the earth's atmosphere. Infrared radiation tends to be trapped by carbon dioxide and water vapour in the earth's atmosphere and some of it is re-radiated back to the earth's surface.
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And if there is to be a schedule for reducing the greenhouse effect, it should be directly linked to the level of economic progress of countries, not to equal measures between them.
According to most climate simulations, the enhanced greenhouse effect should have produced a sharper warming trend during the last several decades in the low troposphere the layer of air from just above the surface to about eight kilometers up than on the surface.
Yet the recent work of a team of German scientists suggests we need to rewrite all we think we know on the greenhouse effect, climate change and its causes as these three statements are perhaps not quite as ridiculous as they sound.
In 1976, he was serving as a principal investigator on the Pioneer Venus Orbiter when a Harvard postdoctoral researcher asked him to help calculate the greenhouse effect of human-generated emissions on the Earth's atmosphere.
All our graduating students seeking professional registration should be able to clearly explain the Earth's carbon cycle and the basic principles of the greenhouse effect.
However, it is the 25 percent non-condensing greenhouse gas component, which includes carbon dioxide, that is the key factor in sustaining Earth's greenhouse effect.
But I also refrained from buying it because the front page of The Times had an article about the greenhouse effect.
Second, burning coal gives off vast amounts of carbon dioxide, the chief cause of the greenhouse effect.
Alternativ Canada converts conventional combustion engine cars into electric cars to decrease greenhouse effect emissions and give traditional gas cars a new life by converting them to Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEV).
Many scientists believe that these gases contribute to air pollution, which intensifies the greenhouse effect warming the planet.
The extra humidity would have provided a vital greenhouse effect, trapping outbound heat radiating from the ground during winter periods marked by 24-hour-a-day darkness.
Although revised to ease some concerns, the measure still is being looked at - depending on who's talking - as a threat to the economy or a model for the nation in dealing with the greenhouse effect and reducing emissions from sport utility vehicles and trucks.