greenhouse gases and global warming

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This show is an introduction to Greenhouse Gases and their contributions to global warming. It shows where they come from and how they effect climate.


  • 1. Green House Gases: An Introduction Prepared for Philazine by Philip Woodard 2008 all rights reserved
  • 2. Definition
    • Earth gets energy from the Sun mostly from visible light
    • Half of this energy is passed through Earths atmosphere since the atmosphere is transparent to visible light
    • Energy that reaches the Earth is absorbed by the surface as heat
    • Earth's surface radiates heat energy back out as infrared waves
    • Greenhouse gases, not transparent to infrared, trap and absorb earths returning infrared radiations
    • This delicate system prevents the wild swings in temperature between day and night that planets with no green house gases experience
  • 3. The Problem is the Balance
    • Too many green house gases and the earth warms up
      • Venus, with lots of CO 2 , heats up to 872 F
    • Too few green house gases and the earth cools off, and day and night temperatures swing more wildly
    • Water vapor
    • Carbon Dioxide
    • Methane
    • Nitrous Oxide
    • NF 3
    • Ozone
    • CFC-12
    • CFC-11
  • 5. Rise in Greenhouse Gases
  • 6. Man and the Rise of CO 2
    • The concentration of CO 2 in our atmosphere today far exceeds the natural range over the last 650,000 years
    • Held steady at 180 to 300 ppm over the last 650,000 years
    • By the end of the 21st century, CO 2 concentrations will rise to 490 ppm to 1260 ppm (75-350% above the pre-industrial concentration)
  • 7. Spike in CO 2 Since 2000
    • Three percent rise in CO 2 levels every year since 2000
    • China has been responsible for most of this global growth
    • Largely from building coal power plants in poorer internal provinces
    • The rate of atmospheric CO 2 rise is increasing
    • The rare of increase during the 1960s was about a third of the rate of increase in the 2000s
  • 8. Man and the Rise of Methane
    • The amount of methane in the air has jumped by nearly 28 million tons from June 2006 to October 2007
    • More than 5.6 billion tons of methane in the air
    • Methane comes from landfills, natural gas, coal mining, animal waste, and decaying plants trapped in the Arctic permafrost
      • Thousands of years ago billions of tons of methane were created by decaying Arctic plants and frozen in permafrost wetlands and trapped in the ocean floor
    • As the Arctic warms, this methane will be freed and worsen warming
      • Methane is more than 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide on a per molecule basis in trapping atmospheric heat waves
    • Scientists are concerned that what they are seeing could be the start of the release of the Arctic methane
  • 9. Man and the Rise of NF 3
    • None in atmosphere naturally
    • Nitrogen trifluoride has quadrupled in the last decade and increased 30-fold since 1978
    • Used as a cleaning agent in manufacturing liquid crystal displays, computer monitors, and thin-film solar panels
  • 10. Rises in Greenhouse Gases: 5000 Years
  • 11. Increase in Some Green House Gases 553 ppt 553 ppt -- -- CFC12 44 ppb 314 ppb 270 ppb Nitrous Oxide 1045 ppm 1745 ppm 700 ppm Methane 104 ppm 384 ppm 280 ppm Carbon Dioxide Increase since 1750 Current Level Preindustrial Level Gas
  • 12. Where They Come From In 2008, a white paper from the Chinese government admitted Chinas contributions of green house gases had exceeded those of the United States 10 .1 From 1990 to 2007, overall U.S. green house gas emissions have rise by 14.7 percent. the United States 10 .2
  • 13. In the U.S.
  • 14. Emissions Are Rising
  • 15. All the Trends Point to a Change Northern Hemisphere Temps Population CO 2 Concentrations Water Use Species Extinctions GDP Loss of Rain Forest and Woodlands Paper Consumption Motor Vehicles Fisheries Exploitation Ozone Depletion Foreign Investment
  • 16. Longevity of Green House Gases
    • Water vapor stays in the atmosphere for days
    • Other greenhouse gases take many years to leave the atmosphere
      • CO 2 has an affective lifetime of tens of thousands of years
      • Methane has an atmospheric lifetime of 13 years
      • Nitrous oxide has an atmospheric lifetime of 120 years
      • CFC-12 has an atmospheric lifetime of 100 years
  • 17. Endnotes
    • 10.1 Clifford Coonan , China Catches up with US in Greenhouse Gas Emissions Irish Times, November 1, 2008 BACK
    • 10.2 Website , U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, USEPA, August, 2008, USEPA #430-R-08-005 BACK


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