Global Warming: The World On Fire!



As the name suggest global warming in simple words refers to the increase in temperatures resulting in heating of the globe. But let us give you a better and broader definition of global warming: “Global warming refers to an unequivocal and continuing rise in the average temperature of Earth’s climate system.” We all now wonder why this seems to a problem. Simply because this process is irreversible for a long period of time and this also causes greenhouse gases to be trapped in the atmosphere. “A greenhouse gas (sometimes abbreviated GHG) is a gas in an atmosphere that absorbs and emits radiation within the thermal infrared range. This process is the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect.”

A lot of people say having greenhouse gases is harmful, but we need them in the right quantities. The very reason that we are able to survive in this planet is because of the greenhouse gases as without these, the temperature across the entire surface of the earth would be below freezing. On earth, naturally occurring amounts of greenhouse gases have a mean warming effect of about 33 °C (59 °F).

What is the effect of greenhouse gases?

Greenhouse gases are those gases which trap solar radiation in the lower surface of the atmosphere and cause the temperatures to elevate drastically. Which are these greenhouse gases?

  • Water Vapour
  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Methane
  • Ozone

These are the four main greenhouse gases that cause the rise in temperatures.

Anthropogenic Greenhouse effect

The strengthening of the greenhouse effect dueto release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere due to human activities is called anthropogenic greenhouse effect. The major activities of man cause the increase in carbon dioxide levels.

According to reports “CO2 is produced by fossil fuel burning and other activities such as cement production and tropical deforestation. Measurements of CO2 from the Mauna Loa observatory show that concentrations have increased from about 313 ppm in 1960 to about 389 ppm in 2010. It reached the 400ppm milestone on May 9, 2013. The current observed amount of CO2 exceeds the geological record maxima (~300 ppm) from ice core data. The effect of combustion-produced carbon dioxide on the global climate, a special case of the greenhouse effect first described in 1896 by Svante Arrhenius, has also been called the Callendar effect.

Real Greenhouses

The term greenhouse effect was given due to the mechanism that greenhouses follow. The also trap heat within certain glass house but the retaining is not the same as that of the Earth. A greenhouse works primarily by allowing sunlight to warm surfaces inside the structure, but then preventing absorbed heat from leaving the structure through convection, i.e. sensible heat transport. The “greenhouse effect” heats the Earth because greenhouse gases absorb outgoing radiative energy, heating the atmosphere which then emits radiative energy with some of it going back towards the Earth.

In contrast, the greenhouse effect heats the Earth because rather than retaining (sensible) heat by physically preventing movement of the air, greenhouse gases act to warm the Earth by re-radiating some of the energy back towards the surface. This process may exist in real greenhouses, but is comparatively unimportant there.


The greenhouse phenomenal does not only take place on planet earth but also several other interplanetary bodies such as Mars, Venus and even the moon Titan exhibit the greenhouse phenomena. Titan though has an anti-greenhouse effect.


What Can Be Done?

There is a lot that can be done at our end to reduce global warming by emitting smaller amount of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Here are 10 things that can be done to reduce the level of global warming.

  1. There is a reason this is number 1. PLANT TREES. Yes, most of our environmental degradation is taking place due to the fact that we our destroying our forest covers and depleting the number of trees.
  2. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: The three R’s which are very important for today’s survival and also the survival of the next generation. Do your bit.
  3. Use less heat and Air conditioning: CFC’s that are emitted due to these electronic devices are also one of the major reasons for global warming. Use insulating weather stripping or sun reflecting paint instead.
  4. Replace Light bulbs. Yes, instead of regular light bulbs shift to CFL’s. They last 10 times longer and use two-thirds lesser energy than incandescent bulbs.
  5. Drive less and drive smart: Chose to walk to nearby areas rather than using vehicles. Vehicular pollution is one of the main causes of environmental pollution. Adopt carpooling methods.
  6. Buy energy efficient products: Buy cars and vehicles with better gas mileage. Avoid using plastic.
  7. Use Less hot water: Buy low-flow showerheads to save hot water and about 350 pounds of carbon dioxide yearly. Wash your clothes in warm or cold water to reduce your use of hot water and the energy required to produce it.
  8. Use the “off” Switch: Keep all unnecessary lights and fans switched off and turn main power points off when not in use.
  9. Get a report card from your utility company: Many utility companies provide free home energy audits to help consumers identify areas in their homes that may not be energy efficient. In addition, many utility companies offer rebate programs to help pay for the cost of energy-efficient upgrades.
  10. Encourage other to conserve energy: Spread the awareness and help serve mother earth from further destruction.

These are small and simple ways which will not only benefit mother earth but also release pressure from our pockets. Follow Green Living. Live a healthy life!






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