What is the Greenhouse Effect? The greenhouse effect is a process that helps keep the Earth warm enough for people, plants and animals to live on. Think of the Earth like a giant greenhouse. Imagine the Earth’s atmosphere like the glass of a greenhouse. Both the gases of our atmosphere and the glass of a greenhouse trap the sun’s heat energy inside keeping the temperature balanced; not too hot or too cold. This is why some of the gases in our atmosphere are called “greenhouse gases”.
Why is this important? It is important to understand the greenhouse effect and how it works because some of the things we do everyday can change the temperature of our planet. If gases - namely, carbon dioxide, continue getting trapped in our atmosphere the earth will continue to get warmer and can eventually become way too hot for us to live on!