Being the top-most concern of twenty-first century, Global warming is addressed almost in every international summit on environment. More and more treaties are signed on reduction measures and collaborative efforts to fight against this global evil. Let us understand what global warming is and what are the causes of global warming?

What is global warming?
The increase in the average global temperature due to natural and man-made changes is known as global warming. It is leading to reduction of Antarctic ice cover, lengthy summers in most parts of the globe to formation of ozone hole. Global warming and climate change are occurring due to emission of carbon dioxide and other air pollutants getting accumulated in the atmosphere. The presence of these gases in the atmosphere is leading to absorption of comparatively higher amount of solar radiations and sunlight in the atmosphere which is otherwise meant to escape into space. This is ultimately resulting greenhouse effect and global warming.  

What are greenhouse gases?
The air pollutants like carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, water vapor, and synthetic fluorinated gases, are some widely known Greenhouse gases.

The Global Warming phenomenon
Earth’s average temperature is maintained by different forms of solar and terrestrial radiations. Solar radiation is often called Shortwave Radiation. The frequencies of shortwave radiation are relatively high and have short wavelengths, which is close to the visible portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. On the other hand, terrestrial radiation is often called Longwave Radiation. These radiations have low frequency and long wavelengths, somewhere in the infrared part of the spectrum.
A small fraction of the solar radiation is only entering the atmosphere. Roughly 30 units of every 100 units of incoming solar radiation are reflected in space by either cloud, atmosphere, or reflective regions of the Earth's surface. The 70 units of solar radiation are not reflected but absorbed by the atmosphere and clouds. The surface of the earth and atmosphere had to radiate these same 70 units to space to maintain the thermodynamic equilibrium.
But due to increased amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, more radiations are retaining an leading to increased global temperature.

Causes of Global warming
Some of the causes of global warming are:

•    Gas emissions: Generating power by burning fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gases, electricity comprise the large chunk of global emissions. Most of the electricity is generated by the burning of fossil fuels, only a quarter of it is produced from wind, solar, and other renewable sources.

•    Manufacturing industries: Industries emit a large amount of smoke containing various poisonous and other harmful gases directly into the air. Other activities like mining, construction, etc. also contributes to it.  

•    Deforestation: Deforestation means cutting down trees or forests for creating spaces for other commercial activities like to create farms or pastures or even to create space for industrial purposes or so on. Since trees absorb carbon dioxide, and by destroying them, large amount of carbon is getting accumulated into the atmosphere. Thus, by deforestation, nature is unable to remove the pollution.

•    Pollution by Transportation: Many modes of transportations are highly dependent on use fuels which emit higher amounts carbon, nitrogen and sulphur compounds into the atmosphere. These include trucks, ships, planes, etc. Road vehicles contribute to the largest part of the air pollution.


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What are the causes of Global Warming?