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What is the relation between covalent bonding and the greenhouse effect?

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The greenhouse effect, as a threshold, determines the amount of energy trapped between the ground and the atmosphere on Earth, caused by the gases in the atmosphere that can absorb and re-emit significant amounts of such infrared radiation like carbon dioxide, water vapour, methane and several nitrogen oxides. That is a common knowledge now, especially when human kind realized severe season shifts affecting the nature. But how the greenhouse effect instigated a fluctuation in seasons, and most importantly, how it made a detrimental impact on the delicate heat balance.

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Figure - 31.1

To better comprehend the greenhouse effect, we need to understand the very structure of the bonds between atoms and molecules firstly, albeit it is an essential subject in chemistry. As shortened as possible, the chemical bonds between atoms emerge generally in two types – ionic bonds and covalent bonds – aside from special bonds like the hydrogen bonds. Ionic bonds occur when two oppositely charged atoms exchange valence electrons to behave like a stable atom. As a result of that bonding, a positively charged cation and a negatively charged anion emerge inextricably. Conversely, covalent bonds occur when atoms with the same electronegativity share electrons to behave like a stable noble gas in most cases; as you can see, the ionic bonds are undoubtedly stronger than the covalent bonds. The reason is as follows. Covalent bonds are as relatively stronger as the electronegativity force between the binded atoms, hence the spectrum of the covalent bonds. And not surprisingly, the stronger covalent bonds the powerful molecules. In other words, covalent bonds do not have a constant strength value; each interaction caused by covalent bonds between atoms has various and, not surprisingly, diverse strength levels to separate them.

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Figure - 31.2

According to the strength of the covalent bonds in molecules, the required energy level to separate molecules differs progressively. In that case, some molecules in covalent bonding can neither be separated nor be weakened in such energy levels while others are eliminated. Now, we are getting closer to an explanation as to how the singled-out greenhouse gases are capable of re-emitting the infrared radiation. The atmosphere consists of various gases in a broadly wide spectrum, even if some of them in very small quantities. As a conclusion, the greenhouse gases absorb the infrared radiation(heat), and their weakly but strong enough to resist covalent bonds hold the infrared radiation until re-emitting it back to the ground; it perpetuates the deterioration of the delicate heat balance on Earth relative to the infrared radiation in the high amount of the greenhouse gases. The reason is as follows. This re-emitted heat pervades in all directions, part of it escaping into space but part of it returning to Earth. In the increase of the greenhouse gases, the infrared radiation goes back and forth from the ground to the atmosphere inexorably, as though in an inescapable heat trap.

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Figure - 31.3

References

Figure - 31.1 https://www.shutterstock.com/tr/image-illustration/greenhouse-effect-computer-graphic-76033612?src=q05Xxu9JgOkep049IDRg8w-1-4

Figure - 31.2 https://www.chemguide.co.uk/atoms/bonding/covalent.html

Figure - 31.3 https://www3.epa.gov/climatechange//kids/basics/today/greenhouse-gases.html




1 ) Chemistry as a Game of Molecular Construction: The Bond-Click Way