Exercises

3.1. How does the Greenhouse effect work (a) in a greenhouse and (b) in the earth's atmosphere?

3.2. The C02 and CH4 content of the earth's atmosphere have been increasing steadily through this century.

(a) What effect do most people think this will have on the earth's climate? Why?

(b) Explain why your answer to part a might be wrong.

3.3. What are the three major factors that control earth's climate? Which of these factors may be affected by human activities? How?

3.4. What is an inversion? Explain how either a subsidence inversion or a radiation inversion occurs in the troposphere.

3.5. In 1997 some researchers made satellite measurements that indicated that the earth's polar regions are 0.55°C warmer during a full moon than during a new moon. The same article mentioned that another researcher cautions that the effect may be an artifact caused by reflection of lunar light off a piece of the spacecraft (the satellite doing the measurement). From what you have learned about earth's climate, explain why you feel either (a) that the measurements are probably correct or (b) that they are probably an artifact and cannot be relied on.

3.6. (a) Which items usually considered in the heat balance of the earth would change appreciably if the earth were dry (no water present in any form): snow, ice, liquid, or vapor? Explain the increase or decrease in the items that change.

(b) Would you expect a change in the mean temperature of the earth? Explain.

3.7. If all the earth's deserts were irrigated to produce crops of various kinds, what would be the effect, if any, on the earth's heat balance? Explain, and indicate whether you think the earth's mean temperature would increase, decrease, or remain the same.

3.8. Considering the increasing need for living space by the earth's ever increasing population, there have been proposals to try to make the northern latitudes more habitable by spreading many tons of soot or black dust on the Arctic ice sheet by cargo aircraft. This approach is expected to have the following results. Since the average thickness of this pack is about 3 m and it now shrinks by about 1 m during the summer melting season, the additional heat absorbed by a sooty surface might complete the melting of the ice in one or two seasons. The resulting open ocean would warm the lands on its border and also create more rainfall in an area that is now quite arid.

(a) Is this proposal feasible? Why or why not?

(b) Assuming that this proposal is feasible, what additional short-term results will it have?

(c) What are some possible additional long-term results of this procedure, if it works?

3.9 The temperature lapse rate of the troposphere is 0.65°C/100m and the adiabatic lapse rate of dry air is 1°C/100 m. Explain, with a diagram, the consequences if the temperature lapse rate of the troposphere were 1.1°C/100m.

0 0

Post a comment