Tiny particles lead to brighter clouds in the tropics

When clouds loft tropical air masses higher in the atmosphere, that air can carry up gases that form into tiny particles, starting a process that may end up brightening lower-level clouds, according to a CIRES-led study published ...

Can oceans turn the tide on the climate crisis?

As we pump more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, the world is warming at an alarming rate, with devastating consequences. While our vast oceans are helping to take the heat out of climate change, new research shows that ...

Cyprus-based project to monitor Mideast emissions

A new Cyprus-based project aims to fill a research gap on greenhouse gas emissions in the east Mediterranean and Middle East in order to help policy makers seeking to tackle climate change in the vulnerable region, officials ...

'Blue finance' hopes to put oceans on a sustainable path

The world's oceans are set to become an increasingly vital resource for helping the planet cope with soaring population growth, but officials are only beginning to craft regulatory frameworks that would ensure "blue financing" ...

Russia joins Paris climate accord

Russia's prime minister on Monday gave formal support to the Paris climate agreement, just hours ahead of a key summit trying to tackle ever increasing gas emissions.

Cutting emissions gradually will avert sudden jump in warming

Reducing fossil fuel emissions steadily over coming years will prevent millions of premature deaths and help avoid the worst of climate change without causing the large spike in short-term warming that some studies have predicted, ...

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Greenhouse gas

Greenhouse gases are gases in an atmosphere that absorb and emit radiation within the thermal infrared range. This process is the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect. Common greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere include water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone. In our solar system, the atmospheres of Venus, Mars and Titan also contain gases that cause greenhouse effects. Greenhouse gases greatly affect the temperature of the Earth; without them, Earth's surface would be on average about 33°C (59°F) colder than at present.

Human activities since the start of the industrial era around 1750 have increased the levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The 2007 assessment report compiled by the IPCC observed that "changes in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases and aerosols, land cover and solar radiation alter the energy balance of the climate system", and concluded that "increases in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations is very likely to have caused most of the increases in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century".

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