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Climate Change and its Impacts on the Environment Essay Example

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Climate Change and its Impacts on the Environment

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Climate Change and its Impacts on the Environment. Latent heat is the energy required to change a substance to a higher state of matter such as solid to liquid (e.g., ice to water), and liquid to gas (e.g., water to water vapor). The same amount of energy is released from the substance when the change of state is reversed. The latent heat involved in the formation of 1 gm of water from ice is 80 calories, and that involved in the conversion of 1 gm of liquid water to water vapor is 600 calories (Pidwirny, 2006). The same amount of heat energy is released when the process is in the reverse direction that is, 80 calories when 1 gm of liquid water freezes, and 600 calories when water vapor condenses forming 1 gm of liquid water.
Q11. What is humidity? How is it related to the energy present in the atmosphere?

To our personal comfort and how we perceive apparent temperatures?
Humidity is the amount of water vapor contained in the air at any given time and place. The amount of water vapor in the atmosphere is dependent on evaporation and condensation.
Humidity is linked to air temperature. The kinetic energy is higher in the warmer air. It is transferred to water molecules as the faster-moving air molecules collide with the slower molecules in the water. The faster moving air molecules lose energy and the slower moving water molecules gain energy and begin to move faster and collide with each other more vigorously. Some of the water molecules will gain enough kinetic energy that enables them to overcome the attractive forces existing between the liquid molecules. Thus, a change of phase occurs from liquid to a free moving gas molecule. If the newly arriving air is colder the opposite occurs. Humidity, therefore, is a measure of how much of the energy available for evaporation has been used to free liquid water molecules from their neighbors.
Environmental factors including airflow (wind), air temperature, humidity, and radiation from the sun and other heated surfaces determine human thermal comfort. Under hot conditions, the body sheds heat to maintain thermal equilibrium. Climate Change and its Impacts on the Environment.

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National Weather Service, 2007. NOAA. Accessed on 5 July, 2010 from


Pidwirny, M. (2006). "Energy, Temperature, and Heat". Fundamentals of Physical

Geography, 2nd Edition. Accessed on 5 July, 2010 from


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