Enhanced CO2 greenhouse to compensate for reduced solar luminosity on early Earth

  title={Enhanced CO2 greenhouse to compensate for reduced solar luminosity on early Earth},
  author={T. R. E. Owen and Robert D. Cess and Veerabhadran Ramanathan},
CURRENT models for the evolution of the Sun require an increase in solar luminosity by 25% since the formation of the Solar System1. Such an increase in the solar constant should have profound effects on the terrestrial climate, but there is no evidence from the fossil record of a corresponding change in the Earth's global mean temperature2. This apparent conflict cannot be explained by the apparent inability of solar models to account for the low observed neutrino flux3. Even models that are… Expand
Nitrogen-enhanced greenhouse warming on early Earth
Early in Earth’s history, the Sun provided less energy to the Earth than it does today. However, the Earth was not permanently glaciated, an apparent contradiction known as the faint young SunExpand
The faint young sun-climate paradox: Continental influences
We examine the various mechanisms which have been proposed to compensate for the climatic effects of a 30% increase in the solar luminosity over the past 4½ billion years. Although atmosphericExpand
Greenhouse warming by CH4 in the atmosphere of early Earth.
It is found that a CH4 mixing ratio of 10(-4) (100 ppmv) or more in Earth's early atmosphere would provide agreement with the paleosol data from 2.3-2.4 Ga, which could have triggered the Earth's first widespread glaciation. Expand
A study of the radiative effects of enhanced atmospheric CO2 and CH4 on early Earth surface temperatures
Large concentrations of atmospheric CO2 in the atmosphere of the early earth have been proposed as a possible explanation of the apparent absence of frozen earth in spite of a faint early sun.Expand
Photochemical Consequences of Enhanced CO2 Levels in Earth's Early Atmosphere
Greatly enhanced atmospheric CO2 concentrations are the most likely mechanism for offsetting the effects of reduced solar luminosity early in the earth's history. CO2 levels of 80 to 600 times theExpand
Carbon dioxide, ammonia and the origin of life
Stellar evolution theory predicts that the luminosity of the Sun has increased by ∼30% over the past 4,000 Myr. Yet geological and biological evidence indicates that the climate of the Earth betweenExpand
Earth’s long-term climate stabilized by clouds
The Sun was dimmer earlier in Earth’s history, but glaciation was rare in the Precambrian: this is the ‘faint young Sun problem’. Most solutions rely on changes to the chemical composition of theExpand
Long-term stability of the Earth's climate.
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  • Environmental Science, Medicine
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Long-term climatic evolution has thus far been studied only with one-dimensional, globally-averaged climate models, and although such models can provide a qualitative understanding of climate history, they rely on a number of assumptions that may not have been valid in the past. Expand
Modelling the global carbon cycle for the past and future evolution of the earth system
The Earth may be described as a global system consisting of the components solid Earth, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere. This system evolves under the external influence of increasing solarExpand
Susceptibility of the early Earth to irreversible glaciation caused by carbon dioxide clouds
The authors' simulations of the early Earth, incorporating the possible formation of highly reflective CO2 clouds, suggest that the Earth might not be habitable today had it not been warm during the first part of its history. Expand


Implications of Solar Evolution for the Earth's Early Atmosphere.
The roughly 25 percent increase in luminosity over the life of the sun shared by many different solar models is shown to be a very general result, independent of the uncertainties suggested by theExpand
The evolution of the atmosphere of the earth
Abstract Computer simulations of the evolution of the Earth's atmospheric composition and surface temperature have been carried out. The program took into account changes in the solar luminosity,Expand
Climate Change: An Appraisal of Atmospheric Feedback Mechanisms Employing Zonal Climatology.
Abstract The sensitivity of the earth's surface temperature to factors which can induce long-term climate change, such as a variation in solar constant, is estimated by employing two readilyExpand
Atmospheric homeostasis by and for the biosphere: the gaia hypothesis
During the time, 3.2 × 10 9 years, that life has been present on Earth, the physical and chemical conditions of most of the planetary surface have never varied from those most favourable for life.Expand
Earth and Mars: Evolution of Atmospheres and Surface Temperatures
Solar evolution implies, for contemporary albedos and atmospheric composition, global mean temperatures below the freezing point of seawater less than 2.3 aeons ago, contrary to geologic andExpand
A Radiative-Convective Model Study of the CO2 Climate Problem
Abstract A radiative-convective model study of the increase in global surface temperature ΔTg due to an increase in the CO2 concentration is presented. The model considers several weak bands of CO2Expand
The Effects of Changing the Solar Constant on the Climate of a General Circulation Model
Abstract A study is conducted to evaluate the response of a simplified three-dimensional model climate to changes of the solar constant. The model explicitly computes the heat transport byExpand
On the Carbon Dioxide-Climate Confusion.
Abstract A number of estimates of global surface temperature sensitivity to a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide to 600 ppm are collected here and critically reviewed. The assumptions andExpand
Chemical events on the primitive Earth.
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  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
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The hypothesis of an early methane-ammonia atmosphere is found to be without solid foundation and indeed is contraindicated, and arguments concerning feasible components support the view that amino acids and proteins preceded sugars and nucleic acids. Expand
Mars and Earth: Origin and Abundance of Volatiles
The perspective gained through the present investigation suggests that this is not a necessary condition for planets at the distance of Mars from a solar-type central star, and if it turns out that Mars is completely devoid of life, this does not mean that the zones around stars in which habitable planets can exist are much narrower than has been thought. Expand