This unique addition to reference literature provides an introduction to the major concepts and contemporary issues that are essential for students of environmental science and environmental studies to know. With over 200 entries authored by world-class names like Anthony Brazel, John Day and Edward Keller, this text is divided into six sections: Environmental Science, Environments, Paradigms & Concepts, Processes & Dynamics, Scales & Techniques, and Environmental Issues.  

Greenhouse Effect

Greenhouse effect

The greenhouse effect occurs due to the absorption of infrared radiation emitted from the Earth by the atmosphere and then warming by re-radiating heat back to the surface (see Table 39, P. 245 under ENERGY AND MASS BALANCE). It was first discovered by Joseph Fourier in 1824, and first investigated quantitatively by Svante Arrhenius in 1896. The term ‘greenhouse effect’ may be used to refer either to the natural greenhouse effect, due to naturally occurring greenhouse gases, or to the enhanced (anthropogenic) greenhouse effect, which results from gases emitted as a result of human activities, such as carbon dioxide. Without these greenhouse gases, the Earth's surface would be about 30°C cooler. The name comes from an analogy with the way in which greenhouses ...

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