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Lecture 4

Week 4 Lecture Notes: Biological Processes and Models

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GEOG 1220
Richard Kuhn

Week 4 Review Biological Processes and Models1 The flow of matterNutrientbiogeochemicalSediment cycles ie phosphorous and gaseous cycles ie carbon nitrogen oxygen1 Sedimentary Cycles nutrients spend much of their time locked up in rock but are released for use by life as a result of weathering processesEx potassium and phosphorous released by broken rock 2 Gaseous Cycle Nutrients spend much of their time in the atmosphere Nutrients are exchanged between the biosphere and the atmosphereEx CO2 oxygen nitrogenPhosphorous cycle limited to a sedimentary cycle Similar to nitrogen it is an effective fertilizer but often causes accelerated growth and aquatic plants that may eventually choke out the water bodyNitrogen CycleNitrogen fixation Bacteria and algae transform gaseous nitrogen with enzymes to a useable form used by plants such as ammoniaFrom decaying organic material denitrifying bacteria convert nitrogen back into the gaseous form and release it into the atmosphereIndustrial fixation adds nitrogen Too much nitrogen can kill vegetation encourages massive growth such as algal bloom dead zonesNitrogen Cycle 2
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