What Is The Greenhouse Gas Effect?
The greenhouse effect is what happens when gases (called greenhouse gases) are trapped in our atmosphere, creating a warming effect. The comparison to a greenhouse is actually in fact incorrect, where heat is trapped in order to provide an appropriate environment for plant life, and is then warmer than outside the structure. Our atmosphere is slightly more complicated than that. The Earth's
atmosphere traps gases like methane, nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide, which make our surface over 30 degrees Celsius warmer than they would be without the greenhouse effect. If you want to be more technical about it, the greenhouse effect is the process in which the release of infrared radiation by the atmosphere warms the Earth's surface.
Recently, the greenhouse effect has also been linked with the phenomenon of global warming. Greenhouse gases all have in common the fact that they allow light from the sun to enter the atmosphere, but trap a portion of the outbound infrared radiation, creating a warming effect. As more and more gases are trapped in our atmosphere and become more concentrated, our temperature is rising. This is largely a result of
carbon dioxide and methane emissions from cars, food production and other fossil fuel powered industries.