2 Why is Carbon so important? Carbon is: a common element found in living tissue; it also forms carbon dioxide gas (CO2)Most abundant element on Earth90% of all compounds on Earth have Carbon!!!Carbon dioxide is: an important component of the atmosphereTaken in by plants during photosynthesisGiven off by plants and animals during respiration
3 The “take up” of carbon Examples: Photosynthesis, In our diagram Carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere is taken up by plants for photosynthesis.Plants use the carbon to build sugars and grow.Consumers get carbon by eating plants and other consumersDecomposers get carbon and energy by breaking down dead organisms
4 Carbon is stored Examples: In Plants and animals Carbon is stored in plant and animal tissues.Large amounts of carbon can be found here (think of a tropical rain forest – Carbon is stored in every organism!)
5 Carbon is stored underground Examples: Burial and decomposition of dead organisms that become fossil fuels (like coal and oil)In our diagram:Decomposition of animals takes place is deposited in the ground, formed into fossil fuels.
6 Carbon is releasedExamples: Plant and animal respiration; burning fossil fuelsIn our diagram:Carbon is released into the atmosphere when plants and animals do cellular respiration (this is how they break down food for energy)Carbon is released into the atmosphere when fossil fuels are burnedCarbon is also released when organisms die – decomposers break down the organism (including the carbon!)
7 Aquatic ecosystems Carbon is also found in aquatic ecosystems. The idea is the same: photosynthesis, storage, respiration.Example: Seaweed does photosynthesis, is eaten by fish. They both store carbon in their bodies and release carbon when they do cellular respiration!
8 OUTEXIT TICKET:Compare and contrast the effect of plant life and human burning of fossil fuels on the levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. (use a bullseye diagram, a t-chart, a venn diagram OR write a short paragraph)