What is the difference between the greenhouse effect and global warming?

1 Answer
Dec 20, 2015

The greenhouse effect is how heat is retained by the atmosphere due to greenhouse gases whereas global warming is the increase in average annual temperatures across the globe.


The sun emits heat and light and some of that heat is trapped in the atmosphere by greenhouse gases.


The greenhouse effect occurs naturally. Lately the greenhouse effect has been magnified due to greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere by humans.


Global warming refers to the increase in annual average temperatures across the globe. As the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere increases, the planet becomes warmer and warmer on average.


Thus, while the two concepts are strongly related, the two do have slightly different meanings. Global warming is happening due to the greenhouse effect combined with increased greenhouse gas emissions by human activities.