The Greenhouse Effect

The greenhouse effect is a natural process that occurs all the time and keeps average global temperatures at around 17 degrees.

The most important greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide. It is highly abundant and it remains in the atmosphere for much longer than other greenhouse gases.

50-70% of global warming is due to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It is mainly a result of human activities that the concentration of carbon dioxide is increasing, enhancing greenhouse effects and causing environmental concerns.

Another greenhouse gas is methane. Methane is produced wen organisms break down the organic molecules of which organisms are made.

This occurs mostly in two situations:

  • When decomposers break down the dead remains of organisms
  • When microorganisms in the intestines of primary consumers such as cattle digest the food that has been eaten