Aerosols are tiny particles formed both naturally and anthropogenically; naturally formed aerosols are dust whipped by wind, sea salt, sulphate compounds arise by natural processes and plants release organic materials into the air and aerosols formed by anthropogenic activities are soot, sulphates from the burning of fossil fuel, fly ash from thermal plants & nitrates from vehicular emissions which forms the bulk of the haze.
Aerosols in the atmosphere by natural means are not invariably a bad thing in fact they act like a substrate around which water vapour could condense into droplets and helps to form clouds. But those released by anthropogenic activities in form of pollutes may alter the climate adversely.
Aerosols are short-lived, unlike greenhouse gases that persist and thereby accumulate in the atmosphere for longer period, these fine particles stays aloft in the atmosphere only for one to three weeks.
They are not evenly distributed around the globe, probably they concentrated near places where they are generated and can also be transported by winds across continents. The quantity and the type of aerosols found in the atmosphere changes from time to time as per seasonal variations.
Topics: Aerosols • Air pollution • Climate engineering • CLOUD experiment • Haze • Natural sciences • Nature • Particulates • Physical sciences • Planetary engineering • Stratospheric sulfur aerosols • Visibility