GLOBAL WARMING

All about GLOBAL WARMING EFFECT,greenhouse effect,global warming facts,global warming hoax,Tips For Fighting Global Warming AND Global Warming Solutions

Global warming is the increase in the average temperature of the Earth's near-surface air and oceans since the mid-20th century and its projected continuation. Global surface temperature increased 0.74 ± 0.18 °C (1.33 ± 0.32 °F) during the last century.The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that increasing greenhouse gas concentrations resulting from human activity such as fossil fuel burning and deforestation are responsible for most of the observed temperature increase since the middle of the 20th century.The IPCC also concludes that natural phenomena such as solar variation and volcanoes produced most of the warming from pre-industrial times to 1950 and had a small cooling effect afterward.These basic conclusions have been endorsed by more than 40 scientific societies and academies of science, including all of the national academies of science of the major industrialized countries.

Climate model projections summarized in the latest IPCC report indicate that global surface temperature will probably rise a further 1.1 to 6.4 °C (2.0 to 11.5 °F) during the twenty-first century.The uncertainty in this estimate arises from the use of models with differing sensitivity to greenhouse gas concentrations and the use of differing estimates of future greenhouse gas emissions. Some other uncertainties include how warming and related changes will vary from region to region around the globe. Most studies focus on the period up to 2100. However, warming is expected to continue beyond 2100 even if emissions stop, because of the large heat capacity of the oceans and the long lifetime of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Increasing global temperature will cause sea levels to rise and will change the amount and pattern of precipitation, probably including expansion of subtropical deserts.The continuing retreat of glaciers, permafrost and sea ice is expected, with the Arctic region being particularly affected. Other likely effects include shrinkage of the Amazon rainforest and Boreal forests, increases in the intensity of extreme weather events, species extinctions and changes in agricultural yields.

Political and public debate continues regarding the appropriate response to global warming. The available options are mitigation to reduce further emissions; adaptation to reduce the damage caused by warming; and, more speculatively, geoengineering to reverse global warming. Most national governments have signed and ratified the Kyoto Protocol aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Radiative forcing




The Earth's climate changes in response to external forcings, such as changes in greenhouse gas concentrations, changes in solar luminosity, and volcanic eruptions. Climate also changes in response to variations in Earth's orbit around the Sun, but as these orbital cycles vary over thousands of years they are too gradual to have affected temperature changes observed in the past century.






Greenhouse gases



The greenhouse effect was discovered by Joseph Fourier in 1824 and first investigated quantitatively by Svante Arrhenius in 1896. It is the process by which absorption and emission of infrared radiation by atmospheric gases warm a planet's lower atmosphere and surface. Existence of the greenhouse effect as such is not disputed even by those who do not agree that the recent temperature increase is attributable to human activity. The

question is instead how the strength of the greenhouse effect changes when human activity increases the atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases.



Naturally occurring greenhouse gases have a mean warming effect of about 33 °C (59 °F). The major greenhouse gases are water vapor, which causes about 36–70 percent of the greenhouse effect (not including clouds); carbon dioxide (CO2), which causes 9–26 percent; methane (CH4), which causes 4–9 percent; and ozone, which causes 3–7 percent.


Human activity since the industrial revolution has increased the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, leading to increased radiative forcing from CO2, methane, tropospheric ozone, CFCs and nitrous oxide. The concentrations of CO2 and methane have increased by 36% and 148% respectively since the mid-1700s. These levels are considerably higher than at any time during the last 650,000 years, the period for which reliable data has been extracted from ice cores.Less direct geological evidence indicates that CO2 values this high were last seen approximately 20 million years ago.Fossil fuel burning has produced about three-quarters of the increase in CO2 from human activity over the past 20 years. Most of the rest is due to land-use change, in particular deforestation.


CO2 concentrations are continuing to rise due to burning of fossil fuels and land-use change. The future rate of rise will depend on uncertain economic, sociological, technological, and natural developments. Accordingly the IPCC Special Report on Emissions Scenarios gives a wide range of future CO2 scenarios, ranging from 541 to 970 ppm by the year 2100. Fossil fuel reserves are sufficient to reach these levels and continue emissions past 2100 if coal, tar sands or methane clathrates are extensively exploited.

The destruction of stratospheric ozone by chlorofluorocarbons is sometimes mentioned in relation to global warming. Although there are a few areas of linkage the relationship between the two is not strong. Reduction of stratospheric ozone has a cooling influence, but substantial ozone depletion did not occur until the late 1970s. Tropospheric ozone is a positive forcing and contributes to surface warming.

Aerosols and soot

Global dimming, a gradual reduction in the amount of global direct irradiance at the Earth's surface, has partially counteracted global warming from 1960 to the present. The main cause of this dimming is aerosols produced by volcanic activity and emissions of pollutants such as sulfur dioxide. These aerosols exert a cooling effect by increasing the reflection of incoming sunlight. James Hansen and colleagues have proposed that the effects of the products of fossil fuel combustion—CO2 and aerosols—have largely offset one another in recent decades, so that net warming has been driven mainly by non-CO2 greenhouse gases.
In addition to their direct effect by scattering and absorbing solar radiation, aerosols have indirect effects on the radiation budget.Sulfate aerosols act as cloud condensation nuclei and thus lead to clouds that have more and smaller cloud droplets. These clouds reflect solar radiation more efficiently than clouds with fewer and larger droplets. This effect also causes droplets to be of more uniform size, which reduces growth of raindrops by collision-coalescence. Clouds modified by pollution have been shown to produce less drizzle, making the cloud brighter and more reflective to incoming sunlight, especially in the near-infrared part of the spectrum.

Soot may cool or warm, depending on whether it is airborne or deposited. Atmospheric soot aerosols directly absorb solar radiation, which heats the atmosphere and cools the surface. Regionally but not globally, as much as 50% of surface warming due to greenhouse gases may be masked by atmospheric brown clouds.When deposited, especially on glaciers, or on ice in arctic regions, the lower surface albedo can also directly heat the surface.The influences of aerosols, including black carbon, are most pronounced in the tropics and sub-tropics, particularly in Asia, while the effects of greenhouse gases are dominant in the extratropics and southern hemisphere.

It has often been suggested in the popular media that recent climate change may be due to variations in solar output.A few studies indicate that climate models may underestimate the effect of solar forcing, but they nevertheless conclude that even with an enhanced climate sensitivity to solar forcing, most of the warming since the mid-20th century is attributable to the increases in greenhouse gases. Others have proposed that the Sun may have contributed about 45–50 percent of the increase in the average global surface temperature over the period 1900–2000, and about 25–35 percent between 1980 and 2000.Studies of variations in solar output find that there has been no increase of solar brightness over the last 1,000 years Solar cycles have produced changes in brightness of about 0.07% over the last 30 years, which is too small to contribute significantly to global warming. The combined effect of natural climate forcing, solar variation and changes in volcanic activity probably had a warming effect from pre-industrial times to 1950 but a cooling effect since.

Greenhouse gases and solar forcing affect temperatures in different ways. While both increased solar activity and increased greenhouse gases are expected to warm the troposphere, an increase in solar activity should warm the stratosphere while an increase in greenhouse gases should cool the stratosphere. Observations show that temperatures in the stratosphere have been steady or cooling since 1979, when satellite measurements became available. Radiosonde data from the pre-satellite era show cooling since 1958, though there is greater uncertainty in the early radiosonde record.

A related hypothesis is that magnetic activity of the sun deflects cosmic rays that may influence the generation of cloud condensation nuclei and thereby affect the climate. Other research has found no relation between warming in recent decades and cosmic rays. The influence of cosmic rays on cloud cover is about a factor of 100 lower than needed to explain the observed changes in clouds or to be a significant contributor to present-day climate change

Arctic methane release



Warming is also the triggering variable for the release of methane from sources both on land and on the deep ocean floor, making both of these possible feedback effects. Thawing permafrost, such as the frozen peat bogs in Siberia, creates a positive feedback due to the release of CO2 and CH4.







Reduced absorption of CO2 by the oceans





Ocean ecosystems' ability to sequester carbon are expected to decline as the oceans warm. This is because warming reduces the nutrient levels of the mesopelagic zone (about 200 to 1000 m depth), which limits the growth of diatoms in favor of smaller phytoplankton that are poorer biological pumps of carbon.

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