Ecosystem Impacts of Climate Change - Jackson School of ...

Ecosystem Impacts of Climate Change - Jackson School of ...

Lecture 11 Earths Biosphere EarthsClimate_Web_Chapter.pdf, p. 30-35; Ch. 3, 46-47, 53-58 I. Biosphere a. GAIA Hypothesis b. Biosphere Basics II. Carbon Storage and Cycle III. Climate Biosphere a. Distribution of biomes IV. Biosphere Climate

a. Natural processes b. Anthropogenic effects Biosphere: Life Processes on Earth Reading: P121-153 Atmosphere Organic parts on Earth

Physical parts on Earth Biosphere Hydrosphere Lithosphere & Cryosphere

Whats driving Earths thermostat? Globally averaged surface temperature today = 59F (15C) Over the last 300 million yrs, Earths surface temperature varies just above or below the freezing point of water, hence habitable to life. GAIA: A New Look at Life on Earth

. . . the physical and chemical condition of the surface of the Earth, of the atmosphere, and of the oceans has been and is actively made fit and comfortable by the presence of life itself. This is in contrast to the conventional wisdom which held that life adapted to the planetary conditions as it and they evolved their separate ways.

James Lovelock, 1979 GAIA forming and regulating atmosphere? An awesome thought came to me. The Earths atmosphere was an extraordinary and unstable mixture of gases, yet I knew that it was constant in composition over quite long periods of time. Could it be that life on Earth not only

made the atmosphere, but also regulated it keeping it at a constant composition, and at a level favorable for organisms? James Lovelock, 1991 Lovelocks GAIA Contribution Whether or not you accept the extreme versions of the GAIA hypothesis, the publication of GAIA, A New Look at Life on Earth (1979) has influenced the way in which scientists and the general public view the Earth. It is still being hotly debated 25 years later.

Raised consciousness! Holistic view of the Earth. Earth from space. Focused attention on the role of the Biosphere in Atmospheric processes Promoted interdisciplinary research (now strongly supported by NCAR) Stimulated research to prove/disprove GAIAN regulatory mechanisms Fostered a systems approach to Earth Science in which the Earth is viewed as a complex system, with biogeochemical cycling between Geosphere, Hydrosphere, Biosphere and Atmosphere with important interactions and feedbacks between them Vertical Dimension of Biosphere

Most life lives in the zone 200 meters below sea level and 6000 meters above sea level. Biosphere Dynamics A. Ecosystems 1. Habitat - where an organism lives, its environment 2. Niche - interactions of an organism with its habitat 3. Ecosystem - habitat, niche and interactions between organisms B. Energy 1. Sun plants animals

2. First Law of Thermodynamics energy cannot be destroyed or created, just changes form C. Water cycle D. Nutrients and minerals recycled 1. Most plants require 17 elements Composition of life (95%) is Carbon, Oxygen, Hydrogen, Nitrogen, Phosphorous, and Sulfur. 2. Elements and minerals necessary for animal functions E. Food chain (phytoplankton copepod fish squid seal Orca ) F. The biosphere pyramid (equilibrium balance / sustainable ecosystem)

Earth Biomes A. Groups of ecosystems within a geographic region exposed to the same physical conditions with similar ecosystem structure. B. Terrestrial biomes polar ice tundra temperate (boreal, coniferous, deciduous) forests grasslands

deserts savanna tropical rain forests C. Aquatic biomes 1. Freshwater (e.g., lakes, rivers, swamps) 2. Marine (e.g., oceans) a. Coral reefs are the marine equivalent of the tropical rain forests b. Continental shelves vs. open ocean 3. Estuaries (transitional between fresh and marine waters)

Todays Lecture Outline Earths Biosphere EarthsClimate_Web_Chapter.pdf, p. 30-35; Ch. 3, 46-47, 53-58 I. Biosphere a. GAIA Hypothesis b. Biosphere Basics II. Carbon Storage and Cycle III. Climate Biosphere a. Distribution of biomes IV. Biosphere Climate

a. Natural processes b. Anthropogenic effects Carbon Storage and Carbon Cycle Major reservoirs: Smallest: atmosphere, vegetation and the surface ocean Slightly larger: soils Much larger: deep ocean Largest: rocks and sediments

Exchange rates (inversely related to sizes): Fastest: atmosphere, vegetation and the surface ocean Slightly slower: soils Much slower: deep ocean Slowest: rocks and sediments Photosynthesis on Land 6CO 2 6H 2 O sunlight

C 6 H12O 6 6O 2 Photosynthesis in the Ocean Ocean Productivity Zones of upwelling

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