The statement that water vapor is a more important fact in global warming than carbon dioxide is a myth. To support my claim, I have listed several reasons or evidences from different sources to prove that water vapor is not more important than carbon dioxide in global warming.
My first argument is that carbon dioxide builds up over time while water vapor stays in the atmosphere for just a few days. For example, the article The Importance of Aircraft Emission in Climate Change posted in Environmental News Network stated that carbon dioxide emissions from jets can stay in the atmosphere for 100 years and while some of this gas can be absorbed into the ocean waters, there is still a substantial amount left in the atmosphere that is not likely to be removed in the near future. On the other hand, David Chandler stated in his article in New Scientist that there is no limit to which water vapor can fall as rain and therefore lessen its concentration in the atmosphere.
The second evidence to my claim is the fact that the planet’s temperature largely depends on the atmospheric level of carbon dioxide, as stated by Kathryn Hansen in NASA’s official website. She also mentioned that carbon dioxide is responsible for 80 percent of the radiative forcing which sustains our planet’s greenhouse effect. The article also highlighted the melting of glaciers that once covered New York City as a direct result of carbon dioxide increase in the atmosphere.
In connection with the second evidence, our third and final argument focuses on how CO2 increase can affect water vapor which solidifies the idea that in order for water vapor to play its role in global warming, CO2 must already be present in the atmosphere. According to Texas A&M University, increase in CO2 causes higher temperature, which in turn causes humidity to accelerate. An increase in humidity means there are greater water vapor present in the atmosphere and this can trigger more global warming.
Texas A&M University. "Water Vapor Feedback Loop Will Cause Accelerated Global
Warming, Professor Warns." ScienceDaily, 20 Feb. 2009. Web. 15 Dec. 2013.
Hansen, Kathryn. “Carbon Dioxide Control Earth’s Temperature.” NASA, 14 Oct. 2010. Web. 15
Chandler, David L. “Climate myths: CO2 Isn't The Most Important Greenhouse Gas.”
NewScientist, 16 May 2007. Web. 15 Dec. 2013.
“The Importance of Aircraft Emission in Climate Change.” Environmental News Network, 21
March 2013. Web. 15 Dec. 2013.