Natural Resources

Natural Resources

Introduction

· The resources, available on the Earth and the energy being received from the Sun, are essential to meet the basic necessities of all life-forms on the Earth.

· The biotic component incorporates all living of the biosphere.

Biotic Component

· The abiotic component incorporates the air, the water, and the soil of the biosphere.

Biogeochemical Cycles

· Biogeochemical cycles explain a constant interaction between the biotic and abiotic components of the biosphere.

· Biogeochemical cycles are a dynamic phenomenon that helps to maintain the stability in the ecosystem.

· The significant biogeochemical cycles are −

o Water Cycle

o Carbon Cycle

o Nitrogen Cycle

o Oxygen Cycle

· Let’s discuss each of them in brief −

Water Cycle

· The whole process, starting from the water evaporation, rainfall to flowing back into the sea via rivers, is known as the water-cycle.

· As shown in the image given above, water cycle is a complex phenomenon. During the process of water cycle, it helps ecosystem by maintaining its balance.

· Water cycle helps in making new fertile soil, increasing the fertility of soil, providing nutrition to the biotic components in different ecological regions, etc.

Carbon Cycle

· Carbon is found on the Earth in various forms, such as diamond and graphite (in solid form) and in combined state i.e. carbon and dioxide (as a gas).

· Carbon is one of the essential elements for the photosynthesis.

· The process of photosynthesis converts carbon dioxide, which is present in the atmosphere or dissolved in water into glucose molecules.

· The glucose provides energy to living things that involves the process of respiration.

· In the process of respiration, oxygen may or may not be used to convert glucose back into carbon dioxide.

· Lastly, the carbon dioxide goes back into the atmosphere.

Nitrogen Cycle

· About 78 percent part of our atmosphere is shared by nitrogen alone.

· Nitrogen is a part of many molecules, which are essential for the life.

· There are a few varieties of bacteria that help in nitrogen-fixing.

· These special bacteria convert the comparatively inert nitrogen molecules into nitrates and nitrites essential for the life in direct or indirect way.

· The nitrogen-fixing bacteria are largely found in the roots of legumes.

Oxygen Cycle

· In the total constituents of our atmosphere, about 21 percent is shared by oxygen.

· Oxygen is also found in the Earth’s crust.

· Oxygen is an essential component of most of the biological molecules, including carbohydrates, nucleic acids, proteins, and fats (or lipids).

· Oxygen, present in the atmosphere, is used especially up in the three following processes −

o Combustion

o Respiration

o Formation of oxides of nitrogen

Oxygen Cycle

· Oxygen is returned back to the atmosphere by the process of photosynthesis.

· Oxygen is lifeline of most of the organisms found on the earth, but for some bacteria, it is poisonous.

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