Carbon Dioxide’s harmful greenhouse effect on Earth has been observed for the first time, and the news is not good for the planet.
Many scientists have argued that carbon dioxide has devastating consequences on our planet, but there are still many skeptics who are not convinced. A new study has observed an increase in the gasses emission by humans.
The researchers — led by scientists from the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) — measured atmospheric carbon dioxide’s increasing capacity to absorb thermal radiation emitted from the Earth’s surface over an eleven-year period at two locations in North America, according to the Berkley Lab Newsletter. They attributed this upward trend to rising CO2 levels from fossil fuel emissions.
In other words, atmospheric Carbon Dioxide’s negative effects on the balance between the incoming energy received from the Sun and the heat released from the Earth’s surface — which has been proven by scientists — were confirmed by the observations from the Berkley team. However, this is the first time these findings were confirmed in the real world, so to speak.
During an interesting Twitter chat, Dan Feldman, one of the researchers who took part in the experiment, talked about the study’s conclusions. Here are some of the highlights.
The results from this study confirm that human activity produces carbon dioxide which creates the greenhouse effect on the surface of the Earth. According to the research, the calculations used in today’s climate models accurately represent the impact of CO2 emissions.
“We see, for the first time in the field, the amplification of the greenhouse effect because there’s more CO2 in the atmosphere to absorb what the Earth emits in response to incoming solar radiation.”
“Numerous studies show rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations, but our study provides the critical link between those concentrations and the addition of energy to the system, or the greenhouse effect.”
“We measured radiation in the form of infrared energy. Then we controlled for other factors that would impact our measurements, such as a weather system moving through the area.”
For their study, the Berkley scientists observed that atmospheric activity between 2000 and 2010 on a nearly-daily basis and included 3,300 measurements from Alaska and 8,300 measurements from Oklahoma. The analysis show the same upward trend at both locations.
One of the most important discoveries from this research allowed scientists to determine the influence of photosynthesis on the balance of energy at Earth’s surface for the first time.
“They found that Carbon Dioxide-attributed radiative forcing dipped in the spring as flourishing photosynthetic activity pulled more of the greenhouse gas from the air,” according to Berkley Lab.
[Photo by RT.com]