The atmosphere, essential for life to be possible

There are planets where the dense atmosphere of greenhouse gases leads to a surface temperature that could melt lead . There are others, or even the earth long before the intensive period of meteorite impact, that on its surface keep radioactive elements that produce scorching heat*. Perhaps during that time of cooling of the earth, millions of years ago, there were optimal conditions that allowed a kind of life on planets like Mars or Venus. Now there is life on earth! But, to understand what allows this to happen, it is necessary to understand that there are a whole series of conditions and factors that make our planet an optimal place for life. But then... Is the earth as special as we think? We explain everything you want to know and much more.

“The different layers of the atmosphere exist because the gas atoms interact differently as we move away from the earth's surface, that is to say that these layers are generated by the interaction of the gas atoms with the decrease in pressure , temperature and density as we increase the height.” in Earth's atmosphere

You would be surprised to know all the circumstances that allow you to be reading this today! Life on earth would be unimaginable if it were not for a series of very specific conditions that are vulnerable to abrupt changes caused by climate change. The atmosphere is one of them. The production of oxygen, the direct blocking of ultraviolet rays, the hydrological cycle, among others, are just some of the conditions that are interconnected and that, in the face of any change , directly alter the atmosphere and consequently our lives.

When we talk about these environmental modifications, we commonly refer to effects that contaminate life cycles and to the layers that protect the earth. Air pollution is a problem that affects every living being on the planet and it is in our hands to prevent an even worse climate crisis, because if we do not change our habits and way of acting, our life on earth could be history . If you do not know very well what air pollution is or what is the difference between atmosphere, hydrosphere and all the cycles that exist on the planet and that allow life , keep reading!

* Study published in the journal Nature Science, by Jellinek of the University of British Columbia .

The atmosphere is really essential

The atmosphere is a mixture of stable gases, approximately 10,000 km thick, attached to the planet by the force of gravity that surrounds the lithosphere and hydrosphere and that surrounds the earth. Without it, the earth would be a hostile and barren world!

Among its most important functions are:
It supplies us with oxygen:

It provides living beings with essential gases for life such as oxygen. It is the second most abundant gas and is found in the troposphere, the first layer of the atmosphere, where organisms, plants and living beings that use this element live.

Allows the existence of water:

It is part of the hydrological cycle, the water cycle that all living beings need to live. Thanks to the atmosphere, clouds form and there is a suitable climate for water to be transported from one place to another. See also: Infographic on the hydrological cycle

It is a natural blocker:

It protects us from most of the ultraviolet radiation, since the ozone present in the atmosphere absorbs the greatest amount of rays that come from the sun.

Provides an ideal temperature:

It allows the planet's environment to regulate itself to an ideal temperature for life. CO₂, present in the atmosphere in an amount less than 0.1%, allows the planet's temperature to remain stable, blocks part of the heat from the Sun's rays during the day and at night, keeps the heat close to the surface.

It is a protective shield:

It protects us from meteorites, since having to go through several layers at different temperatures they tend to disintegrate with the help of gases from the atmosphere, since the molecules are in constant motion and when they collide with meteorites they disintegrate due to their great speed.

We can hear the sounds thanks to the atmosphere:

It allows sound to travel in the form of waves, therefore thanks to the atmosphere you can listen to music and people talk. Sound waves cannot travel in empty space, but they can travel through gases in the air.

Also read The enigmatic terrestrial atmosphere

Air pollution affects our life

All these factors, as well as the cycles that allow life such as oxygen and water, depend directly on the existence of a stable atmosphere . So what about air pollution? Carbon dioxide, which ideally is found in a low concentration in the atmosphere, plays an essential role, since it prevents the direct radiation that reaches us from the Sun from being returned in its entirety to space . In other words, it allows solar radiation to enter but prevents all the heat from escaping so that the earth has an average temperature that allows life.

But the indiscriminate increase of this gas caused by industrial processes, the use of fossil fuels and the felling of forests that absorb CO₂ causes an imbalance in the atmosphere. In this way, the concentration of carbon dioxide increases, sunlight continues to enter, but the heat finds its possibility to leave more and more difficult , thus generating all the consequences of global warming due to the increase in temperature.

Also read: Increase in global temperature

This pollution of the atmosphere, caused by the increase in carbon dioxide, is really an imbalance in the proportion of gases that compose it. “If man breaks this balance by releasing, for example, the carbon dioxide contained in fossil fuels, nature tends to self-regulate towards a new balance, altering the existing one”1. Actually, a greater air pollution will continue to cause an increase in global warming and with it the results that we are already seeing: an attempt by the earth to recover its natural balance.

1. Changes in the atmosphere that alter the balance of the Earth by Juana Fernández in University life of the University of Navarra.

Did you know that you can adopt a tree and transform the lives of indigenous communities?
Click here and find out how

Leave a comment


Thank you for saving the Amazon

Your contribution helps us:

  • 1. Fight poverty.
  • 2. Revert the climate crisis.
  • 3. Support indigenous communities.
  • 4. Protect biodiversity.
  • 5. Protect the water.
  • 6. Preserve de Amazon rainforest.
Por favor espera que salgan los botones....!

Thank you for saving the Amazon

You can pay by payu latam


Discount codes