greenhouse effect

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First used in this sense by Swedish meteorologist Nils Gustaf Ekholm in 1901.[1]


greenhouse effect (plural greenhouse effects)

  1. The process by which a planet is heated by solar radiation which is retained by its atmosphere.
    • 1988 June 24, quoting James E. Hansen, “Quotation of the Day”, in The New York Times[2], ISSN 0362-4331, page A2:
      It is time to stop waffling so much and say that the evidence is pretty strong that the greenhouse effect is here.
    • 1989 May 9, quoting George H. W. Bush, “The White House and the Greenhouse”, in The New York Times[3], ISSN 0362-4331, page A30:
      This contrasts strangely with Mr. Bush's campaign oratory last summer. “Those who think we are powerless to do anything about the greenhouse effect forget about the ‘White House effect’; as President, I intend to do something about it,” he said in Michigan on Aug. 31. [] Mr. Bush has not acted.
    • 2010, Naomi Oreskes; Erik M. Conway, quoting James E. Hansen, chapter 4, in Merchants of Doubt:
      In August 1988, Hansen had given dramatic testimony to Congress asserting that “the scientific evidence for the greenhouse effect is overwhelming.” “The greenhouse effect is real, it is coming soon, and it will have major effects on all peoples.”


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Nils Gustaf Ekholm (1901), “On the Variations of the Climate of the Geological and Historical Past and their Causes”, in Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society[1], volume XXVII, issue 117, page 19: “Firstly, the atmosphere may act like the glass of a green-house, letting through the light rays of the sun relatively easy, and absorbing a great part of the dark rays emitted from the ground, and it thereby may raise the mean temperature of the earth's surface.”

Further reading[edit]