5 Notorious Greenhouse Gases That May Spell Doom For Our Planet

7:00 pm 11 May, 2014

If one is asked to name a calamity that’s literally ruining all our lives day by day, unanimously people point at Global Warming. However, while people mainly think about its harmful repercussions, it’s indeed quite needful to know about the reasons causing the global warming too. In this listicle, we shall divert our attention to one of the major causes of global warming—the green house gases, which absorb the heat generated from the surface of the earth and, instead of letting them escape, reradiate it to the surface. Needless to say, it’s indeed high time to know about these gases and take adequate measures to restrain it.

5. Water Vapor

Yes, it’s indeed one of the most common gases that you often hear about, but trust us, most of the greenhouse gases are the most commonly found ones. However, the unique thing about this gas is that the amount of water vapor on the surface of the earth isn’t regulated by the behavioral patterns of the human beings directly. In fact, it is the air temperatures which do so. In other words, the warmer the surface of the earth, the more heat would be radiated by the earth’s surface in form of water vapor as a result of which, a layer of water vapor forms in the lower atmosphere making it extremely difficult for the heat to evolve out. Hence, the infrared radiation, instead of escaping, gets trapped and is reradiated downwards.


4. Carbon Dioxide

You all know that carbon dioxide is one of the most found gases on the surface of the earth—around 0.03% of the earth atmosphere is comprised of this gas. However, due to the profuse emitting of this gas from the automobiles, burning of fuels and trees, respiration and other issues, the natural ways of “sinking” or absorbing the excess gas aren’t proving to be much worthy enough. Generally, the excess gas is sunk in by the plant life (during photosynthesis) or by the marine life, but globalization on a massive scale is leading to a disruption in this important natural phenomenon.

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3. Methane

Another very dangerous greenhouse gas is Methane, and sometimes proves to be more dangerous than carbon dioxide itself. However, it is found in much lesser concentration than carbon dioxide and also spreads around the atmosphere for a far lesser period than Carbon dioxide. On the surface of the earth, you can get methane from a lot of sources, including volcanic eruptions, wetlands and the methane-oxidizing bacteria that consumes on the dead bodies rotten by termites. Yes, there are natural sinks present for absorbing methane too—earth’s atmosphere and soil—but the fervent emission of this gas due to combustion and globalization is proving a bit too much for the natural sinks to work on!


2. Surface-Level Ozone

Now, here we have got a gas that is a direct result of air pollution. However, while dealing with ozone, do not mistake it with the ozone present in the stratosphere for it has a different importance and usage. The primary source of this gas is the photochemical reactions with, or involving, Carbon Monoxide. But, unlike the above green house gases, this gas don’t have any natural sinking option, making it one of the most vicious gases around!


1. Oxides of Nitrogen and Fluorinated Gases

Well, if you know about greenhouse gases, then you must be aware of the most harmful gases of the lot—Halocarbons and Nitrous Oxides—which are produced generally from the industrial areas and usages. Nitrous Oxide is found in traces in soil, atmosphere and water while the Halocarbons are result of industrial affairs. These two gases are perhaps the most toxic ones and have the capability of ruining the whole ecological balance of the society in no time. Fluorinated gases are also emitted from ACs and our very own refrigerators as well!


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