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Carleton University
Earth Sciences
ERTH 2415
Claire Samson

Chapter 11 SummaryPart 1 Pg 298322 thstThe 20 and 21 CenturyHuman activities have added to the increase in global surface temperature risingsee previous chapter 10The Greenhouse Effect TodayNatural greenhouse effectstrength has varied over the yearsWere changing our climate despite growing concerns Greenhouse Gases CO2 60 of greenhouse warming caused by humans comes from releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere through burning oil natural gas coal and wood as well as clear cutting forestsHow does carbon cycle through the environment 1 COisremoved from the Earthatmosphere by plants during photosynthesis to build tissue 2 2 Plants dieorganic tissue is oxidized and COreturns to the atmosphere and dissolves in water 2Humans have disrupted the carbon cycle by decomposing plants at increasing ratesincreased CO2In 1800 COin atmosphere280 ppm in 2006 COin atmosphere382 ppm 2 2This is an increase of 35 with an increase of 70 since 1950How do we decompose plants to release CO 2Burning wood and burning fossil fuelsClearing land for agriculture heat homes and charcoal to burnCoal oil and natural gas20 removed by plants 25 dissolves in ocean water 55 stays in the atmosphere and traps heat Methane16 of global warming in 1750 CHwas at 700 ppb up 150 now 4Methane is released during decomposition of vegetation in oxygenpoor environmentsswamps rice paddies and cattle digestive systemsBacteria remove carbon from dead vegetation If oxygen is absent carbon combines with hydrogen to create methane30natural decomposition wetlands termites and mud volcanoes70 is given off by human activitiesburning fossil fuels growing rice and maintaining livestocklandfills Burning wood rotting of animal waste and human sewageThe hottest climate in the last 65 million years occurred when deepocean water warmed enough to melt icy methane hydrates on the seafloor releasing a hueThe hottest climate in the last 65 million years occurred when deepocean water warmed enough to melt icy methane hydrates on the seafloor releasing a huge volume of methane gas into the atmosphere If the warming of deep oceans occurring today continues for enough decades to melt the methane hydrates then a warm climate could be a torrid climate Nitrous Oxide NO 2
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