Often the greenhouse effect . a phenomenon in which carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane, and other gases in a planet's atmosphere absorb infrared radiation from the sun and reradiate it through the atmosphere, heating the planet: increased levels of carbon dioxide and other gases cause more of this heating radiation to be trapped on the planet and circulated through the atmosphere, contributing to a corresponding increase in the planet's overall temperature.: See also greenhouse gas.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use greenhouse effect in a sentence
Science News for Students offers explainers on many topics, from areas of the brain to the greenhouse effect to plate tectonics.
So CO2 emissions, I mean, there are people that believe and there are those people who don’t believe in a greenhouse effect and global warming, but CO2 emissions, and in general, petrol consumption is a huge deal.Using machine learning to build maps that give smarter driving advice | MIT Technology Review Insights | June 23, 2021 | MIT Technology Review
Using an infrared source in his well-equipped lab, he showed the greenhouse effect is not triggered by direct sunlight but by infrared radiation arising from the earth’s warmed surface.If Only 19th-Century America Had Listened to a Woman Scientist - Issue 100: Outsiders | Sidney Perkowitz | June 2, 2021 | Nautilus
The amount of frozen CO2 released would not be enough to induce a runaway greenhouse effect, they argue.Should We Terraform Mars? Let’s Recap - Issue 100: Outsiders | Brian Gallagher | May 12, 2021 | Nautilus
If so, contrary to Jakosky, there would be well over a bar left in shallow ground deposits somewhere—enough to trigger a runaway greenhouse effect if vaporized.Should We Terraform Mars? Let’s Recap - Issue 100: Outsiders | Brian Gallagher | May 12, 2021 | Nautilus
British Dictionary definitions for greenhouse effect
an effect occurring in greenhouses, etc, in which radiant heat from the sun passes through the glass warming the contents, the radiant heat from inside being trapped by the glass
the application of this effect to a planet's atmosphere; carbon dioxide and some other gases in the planet's atmosphere can absorb the infrared radiation emitted by the planet's surface as a result of exposure to solar radiation, thus increasing the mean temperature of the planet
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Scientific definitions for greenhouse effect
The retention of part of the Sun's energy in the Earth's atmosphere in the form of heat as a result of the presence of greenhouse gases. Solar energy, mostly in the form of short-wavelength visible radiation, penetrates the atmosphere and is absorbed by the Earth's surface. The heated surface then radiates some of that energy into the atmosphere in the form of longer-wavelength infrared radiation. Although some of this radiation escapes into space, much of it is absorbed by greenhouse gases in the lower atmosphere, which in turn re-radiate a portion back to the Earth's surface. The atmosphere thus acts in a manner roughly analagous to the glass in a greenhouse, which allows sunlight to penetrate and warm the plants and soil but which traps most of the resulting heat energy inside. The greenhouse effect is essential to life on Earth; however, the intensification of its effect due to increased levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is considered to be the main contributing factor to global warming.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Cultural definitions for greenhouse effect
A term used to describe the heating of the atmosphere owing to the presence of carbon dioxide and other gases. Without the presence of these gases, heat from the sun would return to space in the form of infrared radiation. Carbon dioxide and other gases absorb some of this radiation and prevent its release, thereby warming the Earth. This is an effect analogous to what happens in a greenhouse, where glass traps the infrared radiation and warms the air.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.