“Only 47% of the solar energy directed at the Earth reaches the surface of the Earth. The remaining 53% of the energy is absorbed in space.”
—This doesn’t sound right. Surely there isn’t THAT much dust and gas between us and the sun? I couldn’t find any information about this anywhere. Perhaps they meant to say 53% is absorbed by the Earth’s atmosphere? Would that be true? Does anyone know anything about this issue? How much IS in fact absorbed in space?
I’ve read that a large amount of sunlight is reflected back out into space (barring the greenhouse effect). Such that having snow, which reflects the most wavelengths of light, helps cool the planet down (other than, of course, being cold) by making a good proportion of the rays head right back out.
I also very much doubt there’s that much stuff between us and the sun. Moreover the statement seems misleading because the earth would only receive a very tiny fraction of “the solar energy”. Most of the sun’s energy goes in directions not intersecting with the earth.