Matt Rosenberg is a professional geographer and writer with over 20 years of experience.
He is the author of both a geography reference book and a guide to winning National Geography Bee contests. Updated July 15, The area near the surface of the earth can be divided into four interconnected spheres: lithosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and atmosphere.
Think of them as four interconnected parts that make up a complete system, in this case, of life on earth. The Lithosphere The lithosphere, sometimes called the geosphere, refers to all of the rocks of the earth.
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It includes the planet's mantle and crust, the two outermost layers. The actual thickness of the lithosphere varies considerably and can range from roughly 40 km to km.
The lithosphere ends at the point when the minerals in the earth's crust begin to demonstrate viscous and fluid behaviors. The exact depth at which this happens depends on the chemical composition of the earth, and the heat and pressure acting upon the here.
These plates aren't fixed; they're slowly moving. The friction created when these tectonic plates push against one another causes earthquakes, volcanoes and the formation of mountains and ocean trenches. This includes oceans, rivers, and lakes, as well as underground aquifers and the moisture in the atmosphere. Scientists estimate the total amount at more than 1, million cubic feet. More than 97 percent of the earth's water is found in its oceans.
The remainder is freshwater, two-thirds of which is frozen within the earth's polar regions and mountain snowpacks. It's interesting to note that even though water covers the majority of the planet's surface, water accounts for a mere 0. The planet's water doesn't exist in a static environment, it changes form as it moves through https://edu-essay.top/5c/2537-thesis-for-a-temporary-matter.php hydrological cycle.
It falls to the earth in the form of rain, essays on domains of environment into underground aquifers, rises to the surface from springs or seeps from porous rock, and flows from small streams into larger rivers that empty into lakes, seas, and oceans, where some of it evaporates into the atmosphere to begin the cycle anew. The Biosphere The biosphere is composed https://edu-essay.top/7c/1987-thesis-affix.php all living organisms: plants, animals and one-celled organisms alike.
Most of the planet's terrestrial life is found in a zone that stretches from 3 meters below ground to 30 meters above it.
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In the oceans and seas, most aquatic life inhabits a zone that stretches from the surface to about meters below. But some creatures can live far outside of these ranges: some birds are known to fly as high as 8 kilometers above the earth, while some fish have been found as deep as 8 kilometers beneath the ocean surface.
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Microorganisms are known to survive essay on domains of environment beyond even these ranges. The biosphere is made up of biomeswhich are areas where plants and animals of a similar nature can be found together. A desert, with its cactus, sand, and lizards, is one example of a biome. A coral reef is another.
The Atmosphere The atmosphere is the body of gasses that surrounds our planet, held in place by earth's gravity. Most of our atmosphere is located close to the earth's surface where it is most dense. The air of our planet is 79 percent nitrogen and just under 21 percent oxygen; the small amount remaining is composed of argon, carbon dioxide, and other trace gasses. The atmosphere itself rises to about 10, km in height and is divided into four zones.
The troposphere, where about three-quarters of all atmospheric mass can be found, stretches from about 6 km above the earth's surface to 20 km. Beyond this lies the stratosphere, which rises to 50 km above the planet.
Next comes the mesosphere, which extends to about 85 km above the earth's surface. The thermosphere rises to about km above the earth, then finally the exosphere.
Beyond the exosphere lies outer space. Conclusion All four spheres can be and often are present in a single location. For example, a piece of soil will contain minerals from the lithosphere. Additionally, there will be elements of the hydrosphere present as moisture within the soil, the biosphere as insects and plants, and even the atmosphere as pockets of air between soil pieces.
The complete system is what makes up life as we know it on Earth.
Spheres of the Environment