Climate Change

Global Warming

What is the greenhouse effect?

The greenhouse effect is a natural process of the atmosphere that traps some of the Sun’s heat near the Earth. The problem with the greenhouse effect, however, is that it has been unnaturally increased, causing more heat to be trapped and the temperature on the planet to rise. The gases that have caused the greenhouse effect were added to the atmosphere as a byproduct of human activities, such as combustion from automobiles.

A scientist compares ultraviolet wavelengths at a Mauna Loa, Hawaii, research station using an ozone spectrophotometer. (photo by John Bortniak, NOAA Corps)

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