<img src="https://d5nxst8fruw4z.cloudfront.net/atrk.gif?account=iA1Pi1a8Dy00ym" style="display:none" height="1" width="1" alt="" />
Dismiss
Skip Navigation
Due to system maintenance, CK-12 will be unavailable on Friday,8/19/2016 from 6:00p.m to 10:00p.m. PT.

Chapter 17: Climate

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
Turn In

Clouds trap solar energy, which helps to warm the atmosphere. A warmer atmosphere can hold more moisture and could build up even more clouds. These clouds would then trap more heat and…well, you get the idea. This is called a positive feedback mechanism. There are many positive feedback mechanisms in climate change. Another is albedo. As temperatures warm, snow and ice melt. This reduces albedo, which causes temperatures to warm and more snow and ice to melt.

Clouds also reflect energy and shade the land. This would help to reduce global temperatures. So scientists are not sure what the net effect of clouds on global temperatures is. Clouds are the second biggest uncertainty in climate models. The biggest is in how people’s behavior will change, to change human impacts on the atmosphere.

Courtesy of Rob Simmon and NASA. earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=44250. Public Domain.

Chapter Outline

Chapter Summary

Image Attributions

Show Hide Details
Description
Subjects:
Grades:
Date Created:
Dec 29, 2014
Last Modified:
Aug 12, 2016
Save or share your relevant files like activites, homework and worksheet.
To add resources, you must be the owner of the FlexBook® textbook. Please Customize the FlexBook® textbook.
Please wait...
Please wait...
Image Detail
Sizes: Medium | Original
 
Here