The science behind Global warming
Solar radiation or sunlight is a key factor towards global warming, so what is it exactly?
Solar radiation is radiant energy emitted by the sun, it's effectively made up of infrared, visible, and ultraviolet light waves. Infrared light waves are generally invisible to the naked eye but they make up 50% of sunlight and are crucial to why sunlight getting trapped causes global warming. The general rule is the warmer the object, the more infrared radiation it emits.
Ultraviolet radiation is present in sunlight, and constitutes about 10% of the total electromagnetic radiation output from the Sun, however due to the small concentration of it, it does not contribute much to global warming.
Incoming solar radiation from the sun warms the earth surface, now most of that heat is absorbed by the earth but some of those infrared, UV and visible light rays gets reflected and travels towards the atmosphere. Usually that's not a problem, the excess heat gets released and we're all good but that doesn't seem to be case anymore.
The greenhouse effect
The greenhouse effect is the way in which heat is trapped close to the surface of the Earth by “greenhouse gases".
The gases make the atmosphere a greenhouse, they act as a container towards the heat created and force it to stay to the surface.
It's the same thing that happens when you get a cup of coffee to go, and they put that little lid on to stop the heat from escaping. Except that's on purpose, greenhouse gases are a little lid on the planet that stop the heat we create from escaping and it's not a good thing.
The Earth is a perfectly balanced planet, although you might not always feel like it, it is at the perfect temperature for us to thrive. However,
after the industrial revolution started in 1760 humans have been meddling with that perfect climate, mainly through the burning of fossil fuels that give off additional carbon dioxide into the air.
The rising of carbon dioxide levels means that more heat is trapped and that causes temperatures to rise gradually.
Well that was a little bit of a science lesson for you, I hope that helps you understand what it is I'm talking about when I say greenhouse gases and global warming. If you're not too sure if global warming is a thing, hopefully this consolidates it in your mind and if this wasn't enough read the rest of my blog posts and see if that helps.
Until next time, remember to be your own superhero.