Carbon cycle

Nature by jaxxon on flickr

Nature by jaxxon on flickr

We’re going to try and connect all that we have been learning – respiration, combustion, photosynthesis, food chains – into one big carbon cycle. This brainpop video will help get you started.  

This one on fossil fuels explains where oil, coal and gas come from, and leads into our next section on the importance of oil and how to separate it out by distillation.  This video explains how this works in an oil refinery. We’ll do a world energy audit and look at where the natural resources are and what the alternative energy sources might be.

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19 Responses to “Carbon cycle”

  1. Justin vK says:

    Man uses carbon as a main source of fuel. The fuels are gotten from fossil fuels; fuels that took million of years to develop deep underground under pressure. Man uses these fossil fuels for cars, and factories to generate power. The CO2 can’t be absorbed through photosynthesis because of de-forestation. With too many CO2 in the air, it creates a layer above the atmosphere trapping some sunlight. The trapping of sunlight heats up the planet, and contributes to global warming. When too much fossil fuels are used, naturally it is going to run out after a time. When it runs out, man would not be able to create more, because the process takes million of years.

  2. David A says:

    Since the industrial revolution people have started to grown too dependant on technology, transportation and various household things like air conditioning. We ,humans, are impacting the carbon cycle by this overdependency, with an overuse of the combustion segement we are creating more and more carbon dioxide, thus creating the global warming effect. This effect is one of the greater consequences of mankind’s actions.

  3. Mumba.D. says:

    Humans are a effecting the carbon cycle a lot as it’s upsetting the balance in the carbon levels. Today we use a lot of fossil fuels which cant be replace meaning that more carbon dioxide is in the air. Also trees are beening cut down at a faster rate then ever meaning that our “Carbon Sink” is reducing;this affect global tempertures as Carbon Dioxide insulates the earths heat, so not as much heat goes out into in space meaning that the earths temperture is rising slowly which affect our plants weather and other natural cycles.

  4. gabby v says:

    people in our world are responsible for most of the carbon dioxide that has increased since the industrial revolution.
    since the population is increasing, more cars are needed, more electrical devices are needed for communication and far more energy-supported objects are needed for a daily life.
    eventhough a lot of energy is used and carbon dioxide is rising its level in the air, there is still deforestation, which makes everything worse in two ways:
    1. the trees cant get rid of the carbon dioxide and produce oxygen anymore
    2. a lot of carbon dioxide is released while deforesting

    the consequences of rising the carbon dioxide is global warming, natural disasters, and lack of resources when there are a few left.

  5. Nish says:

    For millions of years, the Carbon Cycle has been functioning in a robotic manner. It is the process which keeps the amount of Carbon-di-oxide in the atmosphere at a steady level. But, since the Industrial Revoluton, man’s demand for resources which play an important role in the Carbon Cycle, such as fossil fuels, is increasing at an uncontrolable rate. Activities such as deforestation, which increases the amount of carbon-di-oxide in the air, and the burning of fossil fuels, which is used to run vehicles and machines, forces too much carbon into the atmosphere. The biggest consequece this can cause in the greenhouse effect, which is caused when gasses such as carbon trap the suns heat in the atmosphere.

  6. Trix Lee says:

    A carbon cycle is basically the cycle of carbon. Homosapiens are impacting the carbon cycle in a negative way. We are taking away the plantation that causes photosynthesis which is our only way of getting rid of carbon dioxide. Aside from that, we also have a large increase in population icreasing respiration. The reason that is bad is because respiration creates carbon dioxide. And other than that, we also use a lot of combustion because of the burning of fuels from our cars and our industrialization. Few consequences is that the carbon dioxide would stay trapped in our earth and it’ll keep heating it up. We cannot get rid of carbon dioxide as quickly as we create it. This will promote global warming, making the sea’s hotter as well as the land. It can dry up the land creating a few accidents. Basically the consequences is ruining what we’re living with. We could prevent it by finding much safter ways of using energy.

  7. Adrian W. says:

    In this generation, we have invented new technologies to support our needs. With those technologies, we are burning more and more fossil fuels (process of combustion) which contribute to the high level increasing of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. We also live in the time where we are running out fossil fuels, because we are using too much of it or we are relying too much on fossil fuels. As we burning more and more fossil fuels, we increase the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere (due to the smoke). Another thing is deforestation. Plants are the only organism in this earth which can decrease the amount of CO2 by using it for their respiration, while they are being very useful we’re just chopping them down. The consequences of this might be no more presence of fossil fuels, the air is much polluted, and temperature rise.

  8. JP says:

    Since the boom of industrialization, man has learned to become dependent on many things that require large amounts of resources that are burned, releasing bad gases to the air (for example: fossil fuels). Despite the carbon sinks around the world such as trees and bodies of water, the greed of humans have created an inbalance of the carbon in the air, as the carbon sinks fail to keep up with the pace of humans. Immediate ways of transportation such as all the cars producing fumes from from the exhaust pipes as well as all the factories around the world that are constantly blowing out coulds of black air are very quickly contributing at a large price to the major global issues we have today. To add insult to injury, the humans have been continously taking part in deforestation at an alarming rate and this is even worse for the air in our environment because the absorption of CO2 from the air becomes much less, and sometimes, as a method of deforestation, humans burn trees down, and this only releases more CO2 to the air. Humans have managed to completely disrupt the natural carbon cycle to fit their personal wants and needs and the amount of CO2 in the air is not stable anymore. This carelessness has led to the major problem of global warming and the greenhouse effect. With a high amount of these bad gases in the air, the atmosphere is becoming too heated as these are all trapped. This is a problem because it easily leads and links to extreme and unpredictable change of weather patterns and natural disasters in some cases. We already are witnessing the negative effects of these global problems, but if humans do not stop and try to create hange, the products of these problems could be taken to the pinnacle of extremity, and the world could one day become under conditions that humans cannot survive in anymore.

  9. Sam V. says:

    Humans greatly affect the carbon cycle in everyday living. As we have developed more and more machinery, all coming from factories, the gas emitted is carbon, which is released into the atmosphere. The gas released from cars is also a form of carbon. Since most humans use cars frequently, much carbon is extruded into the air. Humans also burn fossil fuels for use. This happens through deforestation. With these, comes consequences. The build-up of carbon in our atmosphere also affects the greenhouse effect. Carbon is trapped inside Earth’s atmosphere, causing air pollution to worsen, as well as our climate temperatures rising.

  10. Anushay A. says:

    Man’s Impact on the Carbon Cycle
     Possible consequences

    Carbon is the fourth most abundant element in the world. This is due to the constant emission of carbon into the atmosphere by everything that lives within it. As stated in the carbon cycle, not only do animals, plants, decomposers, and volcanic eruptions emit carbon, but humans do too. In fact, man is responsible for emitting the most carbon in our environment. Humans emanate carbon by burning fossil fuels like coal or gasoline. Not only are we emitting a larger amount of carbon through the combustion of the fuels, but we are also cutting down on our resources of fossil fuels, enabling us from the use of substances like coal or gasoline in the near future. We also are developing new technology every year, which increases the demand in use of fossil fuels, yet again increasing the emission of carbon into our atmosphere. This is a major consequence as fossil fuels are needed to produce electricity and power for our simple needs. If alternative sources are not found, or simply used, this could mean a shortage of power in our society. Also, by deforesting our supply of tree’s we are decreasing and slowly eliminating our only source which decreases carbon; photosynthesis. Photosynthesis produces oxygen and takes in carbon dioxide for it’s process. With the lack of trees, we will not only have once again a major increase of carbon, but also a decrease in oxygen. Another consequence is the greenhouse effect, how carbon is trapped within our atmosphere and worsens the pollution in our environment. Therefore, humans are responsible for a major increase of carbon in our atmosphere and all of the leading consequences that are related to it.

  11. Danilo says:

    Man has had a very large impact on the carbon cycle, for example it is now more out of balance than ever was before. Ever since the industrial revolution, man has been producing more and more carbon emission due to combustion and burning of the fossil fuels. Not only do we rely on these fuels, but since the population is constantly increasing the demand is also increasing, and as we all know this contributes to the green-house effect which traps gasses that can potentially warm the earth. This could lead to climate change.

  12. Sera Yun says:

    Men’s Impact on the Carbon Cycle and its Consequences:

    Since the outbreak of the Industrial Revolution in the early 1700’s, the overall level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has experienced a drastic increment due to the massive burning of fossil fuels and expansion of deforestation. In order to support the rising technology of the world today, the burning of oil and coal increased, which further released more carbon into the air at a rate faster than its natural removal processes. The only factor that is capable of eliminating carbon was photosynthesis by trees, however, even this source is decreasing due to the accelerated deforestation to derive timber or extend the farmlands to cultivate more crops or livestock. These synthetic influences result in “greenhouse effect” whose increase in carbon dioxide level in the atmosphere traps the heat and elevates the temperature of the planet, leading to “global warming” that instigates many societal and environmental issues such as the sinking islands of Pacific due to its sea level rise. Moreover, global warming entails concerns pertaining to water resources, natural disasters, agriculture and human health.

  13. Kevin Daniel says:

    Some of the effects that men have brought upon to Earth includes many negative side effects. Some of these includes, the ‘green house effect’ which is caused by deforestation, and burning of fossil fuels. This have brought a rise in to the Earth’s temperature and carbon doxide level causing unpredictable weather patterns melting of the ice in the North Pole. The rise of carbondioxide level is also putting the health of man kind at risk as CO2 is dangerous and harmful to the body. The only way to prevent the increase in CO2 is through photosynthese. However, humans have been burning trees sending CO2 up in the air at the same time stopping the process of photosynthesis.
    Thus, we can prevent this by reducing the usage of fossil fuels by using more reusable energies such as solar/hydro energies. Also we could start recycling papers reducing the deforestation rate.

  14. Timmy and Carlo says:

    Mans affect on the Carbon Cycle is very signifigant. We affect the carbon cycle in several ways, mainly through deforstation and burning fossil fuels. When we destroy our own forests, this affects the carbon cyle in two ways: 1. more carbon dioxide is released into the air due to the fact that we burn our forests 2. Plants are the only organism that can absorb carbon dioxide (carbon sinks) through photosynthesis. When we burn fossil fuels, especially at the level we burn it at, tons of carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere. Not only that, but we also release more carbon dioxide faster than plants can absorb it.

  15. Agustin says:

    Long before humans inhabited the carbon cycle was balanced. However humans have modified this balance increasing the carbon in the atmosphere. Since the Industrial Revolution the levels of carbon dioxide have increased by 40% because of the increase of the burning of fossil fuels. This impact wouldn’t have been or be so big if it wasn’t for the deforestation performed on the globe. Green plants are the only ones that can do the process of photosynthesis (that transforms CO2 int O) and they are being cut down or worse, burned contributing to the upset of the CO2 levels. To solve this problems several conflicts can be generated regarding countries that use their natural resources as their income. To generate electricity without increasing the upset we should look forward to install a lot of wind turbines and use solar power. Also it would be a good idea to develop a turbine to use under the sea were the currents are strong. It should be able to turn to align with the currents that often change.

  16. Tyler Sy says:

    Humans are throwing the carbon cycle out of balance in a number of ways. Carbon Dioxide is put into the atmosphere by natural means, such as volcanic and other geologic activity, respiration by all living things, and by decomposition of dead and decaying matter. Human activity such as the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation is adding more CO2 into the atmosphere. Deforestation has the dual effect of removing plants that would otherwise absorb the Carbon Dioxide out of the atmosphere. In order to bring the cycle back into balance, new fuels and energy sources are being developed and utilized, such as wind and solar energy, biofuels and re-forestation. But so far, these methods are not being implemented at a nearly fast enough rate to turn the tables on CO2 emissions. This topic ties in with poverty, corruption, politics and even education, but I’ll leave that to the GIN project that Grade Eight is doing.

  17. Davis M. says:

    The Carbon Cycle is a very complex web of interconnecting events and biological organisms which contribute to the in- and output of Carbon throughout the history of the Earth. Animals and plants are part of this and all eventually pass away, and can each do one of two things: fossilize or decompose.

    Decomposition is the act of decomposers such as microscopic bacteria which eat away the flesh and muscles of the dead animal, and as they do so they respirate and release carbon dioxide into the air. This is eventually recycled back into plants when they photosynthesize and exhale oxygen, which all animals require to live.

    When they fossilize, they are trapped in the ground over millions of years along with the carbon they stored in their lifetime right up until their death. In the present, humans are using these ancient fossils and burning them as fuel for what we now consider daily necessities: automobiles, factories, electricity, etc.

    Because of our enormous population boom in the past 100 years as well as the Industrial Revolution in the 1700s, we have been exponentially increasing the amount of fossil fuels burned, which in turn is exponentially increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This is bringing up the Earth’s over all temperature much higher than any temperature ever recorded in the history of the Earth, endangering all life that exists on it. It twists up weather systems, increasing the ferocity of floods, storms, hurricanes, typhoons and many other natural disasters.

    By letting our population increase so much along with the Earth’s resources which we use up in order to supply the needs of the human population, we have disrupted the carbon cycle and put the Earth and all its inhabitants into a whole new cycle of destruction. We are the ones responsible for this mess, and so we follow the lesson our parents taught us all when we were much younger: If it’s your mess, CLEAN IT UP! We have not yet found a way to directly remove the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, but we can certainly decrease our output of it back to a manageable and sustainable level that will once again benefit life on Earth. We can do this by converting to GREEN energy: biodiesel, wind turbines, geothermal plants, solar panels, hydroelectric energy, and so many more options. These are not only more sustainable but also more and more affordable as we continue to advance these new technologies in everyday innovation. If green energy is not currently available to you, cut your electricity bill in half by turning off your lights and aircon whenever they are not needed! There are so many ways to help out, but we can only wait until the governments of our world finally decide to switch to green energy. For the time being, be green!

  18. Hiram Adames says:

    Humans affect the carbon cy cle in many ways. First, they cut down trees so the CO2 doesn’t get absorbed. Second, there is a large number of us so we give of a lot of carbon Dioxide ourself and all the machinees we have. Some ways to reduce green house gases is to cut down our population by having laws on how many babies can be in one family. Another is to find an alternative source of energy. Also, we can plant more trees. Lastly, we need some realy out there idea on how we can improve our situation.

  19. Ethan Que says:

    Since the discovery of the industrial revolution and the use of fossil fuel, the carbon cycle has become not balanced. Because of this the increase of CO2 from the Industrial Revolution to now is about 40%. Only plants are able to stop this bceause they could soak in carbon dioxide through a process called photosynthesis.
    Because of all of this deforestation stuff, plants are being endangered and the CO2 levels increase. There are ways to prevent CO2 from rising. Thanks to our latest adavanced technology, we are being able to use solar panels to convert sunlight into energy just like what plants do and also use some hydro-power meaning that you could use water as a source of energy or use wind turbines to generate electricity.

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