It cannot be denied that the uncontrollable amount of gases being released into the atmosphere is now taking its toll on the environment. As of the moment, greenhouse gases are starting to create a real threat to all the creatures that this planet hosts and not even the thinking humans could get away from this global dilemma. So what exactly are greenhouse gases and what is the single most evident effect they have to the environment? Basically, greenhouse gases are emitted particulates coming from human activities which accumulate in the upper layer of the atmosphere.
These gases may come from vehicles, commercial products and industrial facilities. The Natural environment has its own contributions too but at a very conservative amount and in the most natural of ways. For most people, and for most creatures, greenhouse gases do not immediate induce a negative after-effect. However, as these gases escape into the atmosphere, they tend to form a huge blanket which traps the excess heat in the Earth’s surface coming from the sun’s rays. In the normal course of nature, greenhouse gases will absorb the heat of the sun while some parts of it will be reflected out (High Beam Research, 2005).
However, at higher concentrations, these compositions of water vapor, methane, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and other chemicals can build up too thickly that the excess heat may no longer be able to bounce back to space causing it to be trapped in the lower portion of the Earth’s atmosphere. Therefore, the single most evident effect of a large concentration of greenhouse gases will be the rise in the planet’s temperature. Greenhouse gases’ effect on world temperature rise may be as benign at it seems but actually, the secondary effects of these gases are far than being simple.
With such an increase in world temperature, the planet’s normal climate procedures may be compromised, affecting the lives of all the biological creatures, including of course the humans. Over the last century, the world’s average normal temperature has already increased by about 0. 50 degrees Celsius (Hopwood). It may seem not much but the effects are truly obvious by now. With an increase in temperature, the polar ice caps will melt dramatically. This will permit a rise in world water levels threatening the lives of those living near the coastal areas.
Also, such rise of the water in oceans may lead to the redistribution of water resources which will make it much harder for food production. Another possible effect of a thermal increase due to greenhouse gases is the sudden changes in weather patterns. Since The El Nino and La Nina phenomenon directly interact with the changes in the atmosphere (National Weather Service), they will be aggravated which will cause more devastation on human lives. Due to the redistribution of the wind and heat cycles, more torrential rains may be expected while severe droughts can be experienced in certain parts of the world.
Lastly, due to the changes in weather patterns, food production will be much affected. Crops and livestock would be very hard to produce considering that all of these food segments depend mainly on the natural courses of the environment. These concerns may simply spell an unimaginable chaos among the societies of the world in general. In general, the most significant effect of greenhouse gases is that they serve as the main catalysts in the changing course of the Earth’s climate. These gases have long been dispersed by nature long before humans have occupied a vast majority of the planet’s resource domains.
So what seems to be the problem? The main dilemma lies in the very ignorance of people who doesn’t even care about nature’s limitations. As a conclusion, greenhouse gases effects simply translate to the people’s incapacity to discipline themselves. The threats may already be here but it is never too late to reduce the amounts of greenhouse gas emissions. Illustrations Figure 1. The Greenhouse Effect Retrieved from Nick Hopwood’s “Greenhouse Gases and Society” webpage. http://www. umich. edu/~gs265/society/greenhouse. htm Figure 2. Greenhouse Gases Atmospheric Distribution
Retrieved from Nick Hopwood’s “Greenhouse Gases and Society” webpage. http://www. umich. edu/~gs265/society/greenhouse. htm
High Beam Research. 2005. The Greenhouse Gas Effect. Infoplease. Retrieved April 22, 2008 from http://www. infoplease. com/ipa/A0004686. html. Hopwood, N. Cohen, J. N. D. Greenhouse Gases and Society. Umich. Retrieved April 22, 2008 from http://www. umich. edu/~gs265/society/greenhouse. htm. National Weather Service. N. D. El Nino/La Nina Information. NOAA. Retrieved April 22, 2008 from http://www. wrh. noaa. gov/wrh/EL-LA/el-la_main. php.