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Term Definition

Greenhouse effect A naturally occurring effect by which longer wavelength radiation is trapped and
is caused by several gases

Greenhouse gases
- Methane, CFCs, Carbon dioxide, Nitrous oxide

Conditions that would increase the release of methane from dead organic
- Anaerobic
- Warm
- Presence of methanogenic bacteria
- Waterlogged

Outline the impact of methane and CO2 on the greenhouse effect

- CO2 is the main greenhouse gas
- Methane contributes to the greenhouse effect

Explain the role of saprotrophs in recycling carbon

- Saprotrophs break down organic matter
- Releases enzymes into organic matter (Extracellular digestion)
- Release carbon dioxide
- Produce Carbon dioxide by respiration
- Carbon dioxide can then be used by plants/autotrophs

Suggest reasons for an increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration

- Burning fossil fuels
- Burning forests
- Destruction of autotrophs that fix carbon dioxide

Effect of an increase in carbon dioxide concentration of carbon dioxide

on organisms in a pond
- Increased photosynthesis by plants
- Carbon dioxide used in photosynthesis
- Makes water more acidic
- Hinders growth of some plants as they cannot grow in acidic water
Outline the roles of living organisms in the carbon cycle
- Plants use carbon dioxide in photosynthesis
- Plants produce carbon compounds from photosynthesis
- Plants are eaten by primary consumers
- Primary consumers are eaten by secondary consumers
- Carbon compounds are digested and absorbed by consumers
- Carbon dioxide is released by cell respiration in consumers
- Organisms die and are decomposed by saprotrophic bacteria/fungi
- Carbon dioxide is released by cell respiration in decomposers
- Enzymes are released to digest carbon compounds in organic matter
- Combustion releases carbon dioxide
- Humans burn fossil fuels adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere

Outline ways in which leaves take part in the carbon cycle in ecosystems
- Leaves release carbon dioxide when they respire
- When they are burned
- Carbon is passed to decomposers when they die
- Carbon is passed to detritus feeders from leaf litter
- Carbon is passed to consumers in the food chain
- Carbon removed from the carbon cycle when leaves are fossilised

Outline how phosphate and nitrate ions are used in the synthesis of
organic molecules
- By photosynthesis
- Attached to carbon compounds
- Phosphates used to make DNA
- Nitrates are used to make amino acids/DNA
- Transported from roots to leaves

Outline the role of photosynthesis and cellular respiration in carbon

cycling and energy flow in food chains
- Nutrients are recycled (The carbon cycle)
- Some atmospheric carbon fixation through fossilisation
- Energy is not recycled
- In cellular respiration, carbon dioxide is released to the atmosphere
- Decomposers also release carbon dioxide from feeding on dead matter
- Process releases energy
- In photosynthesis, carbon dioxide is fixed
- Photosynthesis is endothermic
- Light energy is converted to chemical energy
- Energy is made available to food chain
- Energy and carbon is passed through food chains
- Only 10-20% of energy is passed from one trophic level to the next
- Remaining energy is released through cellular respiration