Energy flow in Ecosystems Energy, Ecosystems, and Ecology! Different Types of Energy Mechanical Energy is the energy associated with the motion or position of an object. Mechanical energy can be kinetic or potential energy. Mechanical Energy is the total energy of the system. Examples: School Bus Moving, Frog Jumping, and even sounds moving through the air. Roller Coaster Kinetic and Potential Energy Gizmo Different Types of Energy Thermal Energy is the total energy of the particles in a substance or material. When the thermal energy of an object increases it’s particles move faster, making the temperature of the object rise. Ice Cream melts when its thermal energy increases. Different Types of Energy Chemical energy is potential energy stored in chemical bonds that hold chemical compounds together. Chemical energy is stored in the foods you eat and in a match that is used to light a candle. Chemical energy is even stored in the cells or your body. Chemical Energy comes from a chemical reaction and can be absorbed in the form of a chemical compound. What chemical reaction do we use for our chemical energy? Different Types of Energy The movement of electric charges produces electricity or electrical energy. You rely on electrical energy from batteries or power lines to run electrical devices. The Importance of Photosynthesis Photosynthesis is the chemical process where plants take sunlight and convert it into energy. This is the equation for photosynthesis. 6CO2 + 6H2O + Energy C6H12O6 + 6O2 The reactants for photosynthesis are Carbon Dioxide, Water, and Sunlight Energy The products for photosynthesis are Sugar and Oxygen. Photosynthesis Video The Chemistry of Photosynthesis The Importance of Photosynthesis The sunlight is the source of energy for all living things on Earth. The energy source for all ecosystems is the Sun. Without sunlight being converted into useable chemical energy plants could not grow. If plants quit reproducing and growing the foundation for all food chains would be ruined. Only a few rare archaebacteria would survive. The Importance of Photosynthesis Not only does photosynthesis provide food and energy to other organisms it’s our source for oxygen. 99% of organisms are aerobic. That means they need oxygen to live and a certain amount of it. Without plants producing oxygen most of the world’s organisms would die out within weeks. Plants use sugar for their energy and growth needs. Types of Autotrophs Autotrophs are also known as producers. They make their own food through the process of photosynthesis. Most autotrophs are actually photoautotrophs because they take the sunlight and convert it into food. Some autotrophs are known as chemoautotrophs because they convert chemicals like sulfur or ammonia into useable forms of energy or food. Where does photosynthesis occur and how does it influence a plant? Photosynthesis occurs in the chloroplasts of the plant cells. Chloroplasts convert the light energy into sugar through various reactions including the light and dark reactions as well as the Calvin Cycle. The sugar is converted into useable energy or ATP for the plant cell so it can grow and reproduce. Photosynthesis Continued…… Photosynthesis converts Solar Energy into Chemical Energy. Cellular Respiration the opposite of Photosynthesis During respiration, cells break down simple food molecules such as glucose and release the energy they contain The following is the equation for respiration C6H12O6 + 6O2 6CO2 + 6H2O + Energy The reactants for this equation are sugar glucose and oxygen. The products are carbon dioxide and water and mechanical and thermal energy. Respiration and Photosynthesis are Chemical Reactions. Respiration releases energy from food. Chemical Energy is converted into Mechanical and Thermal Energy in this process! Respiration the opposite of Photosynthesis Respiration in animals is a process that converts food energy into mechanical energy and heat energy. Heat energy makes us as animals warm blooded or endothermic organisms. Our bodies maintain a natural temperature in non-extreme environments. Mechanical energy in our body can be converted into useable energy in our bodies so our bodies can perform their regular functions. Cellular Respiration Animation Photosynthesis vs. Respiration 1. Photosynthesis occurs in the presence of light (and chlorophyll in plant cells) 2. Requires energy (light) to make sugar (glucose) 3. Complex substances (sugar) are formed from simpler ones 4. Carbon dioxide and water are the reactants. 5. Oxygen is a product. 6. Solar Energy is converted into Chemical Energy 1. Respiration occurs at all times in cells. 2. Releases energy from sugar 3. Complex substances (sugar) are broken down into simpler ones. 4. Carbon Dioxide and water are the products. 5. Oxygen is a reactant 6. Chemical Energy is converted into Mechanical and Thermal Energy. Reactants and Products for Photosynthesis and Respiration What are the reactants for photosynthesis? What is the optimal temperature for plant/seed growth? What is the optimal water amount for plant/seed growth? What is the optimal amount of light for plant/seed growth? The right amount of all the products is dependant upon the plant. There is no one correct obvious answer, but it is important that you are able to look at graphs and find out what variable is best for a specific plant. The Right Amount of Light The Right Temperature Range Energy in our Ecosystem Where does energy in our ecosystem start? What path does it follow to get to us? There is an energy pathway that goes from Sunlight to mechanical energy. It is as follows: 1. Sunlight: Light Energy: Plants Use Photosynthesis to form Sugars: 2. Sugars Stored as Chemical Energy in Plants: 3. Plants are consumed: 4. Through Respiration Chemical Energy from plants is converted into Mechanical Energy for our Muscles Energy Cycle Animation Animals can be classified by how they get their energy! Herbivores get their energy by consuming plants Carnivores get their energy by consuming other animals Omnivores get their energy by consuming plants and animals What’s a Heterotroph? Heterotroph is an organism that requires organic substrates to get its chemical energy for its life cycle. Humans are Heterotrophs. All Consumers are Heterotrophs! Food Chains A food chain is a series of events in which one organism eats another and obtains energy. The first organism in a food chain is always a producer, such as the grass in a field. The second organism is a consumer that eats the producer, and is called a first-level consumer. This first level consumer has to be a herbivore or an omnivore. A second-level consumer might eat the first-level consumer. (and so on and so on) The second level consumer is usually a carnivore. In this picture what would happen if all of the caterpillars died off? Food Chain or Food Web A food chain is a series of events in which one organism eats another and obtains energy. A food web consists of many overlapping food chains in an ecosystem. Food Web Ecological Pyramid A ecological pyramid or energy pyramid shows the relationship between consumers and producers at different trophic levels in an ecosystem. Shows the relative amount of energy or matter contained at each trophic level. The Pyramid shows which level has the most energy and the highest number of organisms. Energy Pyramids Most of the energy the primary consumer gets from the producer is used by the consumer. Some of the energy moves into the atmosphere as heat. Most of the energy lost in this pyramid is lost as heat. Whatever energy is left is available for the next consumer. (if there is one) The picture to the right is an energy pyramid. Energy Pyramids That the amount of available energy decreases as you go up the food chain. It takes a large number of producers to support a small number of primary consumers It takes a large number of primary consumers to support a small number of secondary consumers The # of organisms and the amount of energy decreases as you move up the pyramid. Where does the energy go? When an organism eats it obtains energy. Some of this energy is used to move, grow, reproduce, and carry out life activities. For warm blooded creatures this includes heating our bodies. Because of this only some of the energy will be available to the next organism in the food chain. Biomass The total mass of the organic matter at each trophic level is called biomass. Biomass is just another term for potential energyenergy that is to be eaten and used. The transfer of energy from one level to another is very inefficient. (10% Law) Another Energy Pyramid • Which level has the most energy? • Which level has the most organisms? • Which level has the least organisms? • Which level has the least energy? Humans can disrupt or help Food Webs Can anybody think of any food webs or chains that humans have influenced positively or negatively? Some ways we have helped our world People create wetlands and nesting boxes that increase the number and range of wood ducks. Restoring natural habitats by planting trees and increasing foliage. Some ways we have damaged our World The increase of acid rain is caused by more greenhouse gases in the air. The acid rain can damage amphibian eggs and reduce the population of frogs. Acid rain is found in parts of the country where there are many cars and power plants. Water in the form of rain is chemically combined with sulfur dioxide and oxygen to create sulfuric acid, which then becomes rain. Some ways we have damaged our World Clear cutting is a logging practice when all or most of the trees in a harvest area are cut down. Clear cutting causes a major loss of habitat and a large increase in soil erosion. Without tree seedlings to grow an area such as this can not recover for many years. Inference vs. Evidence An inference is a guess about a problem or situation. Evidence is actually based upon what you really know to be true. Make an inference about the Lion to the right! Inference Activity Infer the possible effects that humans could have on a desert ecosystem. Infer the possible effects that humans could have on an arctic ecosystem. Same Ecosystem different Scientists Let’s say our ecosystem we are studying is the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. How would different scientists study this environment? For example how about a Biologist, Geologist, Chemist, Physicist, Botanist, Ecologist, etc. To Be or not To Be Extinct Extinction occurs when members of a species are no longer surviving in any environment. Endangered is when you have a very small number of individuals left in a specific species. If an organism goes extinct what effects does that have on other organisms and it’s environment? Tasmanian Tiger went extinct within the last 100 years. As many as 27,000 species of various organisms go extinct each year. Why try and Save Endangered Species? So why is protecting endangered species important? What can you do? How can we make our World better? The following is going to be a discussion on what we have done that is wrong or bad as of late. We are all guilty of one or quite a few of these problems. I have suggestions written out on how you can payback the environment for certain negative things you have done. 1- View Lot Homes Building a big house on the hill gives a great view of the valley When land is cleared for a home or a parking lot then it will decrease the amount and types of animals that can live nearby. Status Symbol 1- View Lot Homes Require some habitat destruction Birds Deer Elk Rodents Reptiles 1- View Lot Homes Require some removal of vegetation, which allows erosion to occur faster Better views = steeper slopes = more erosion Building Roads into areas that are not residential. 1- View Lot Homes Uses a lot of Wood and Tree’s! Create lots of construction waste View Lot Homes - Payback Create areas for wildlife in the landscape Provide nesting boxes and year-round food for birds View Lot Homes - Payback Re-plant native vegetation Do not overly use insecticides or pesticides View Lot Homes - Payback Slow erosion by planting trees Use erosion control fabric on steep slopes Place large boulders or imbed logs along pathways View Lot Homes - Payback Recycle household trash as much as possible Look for the recycle symbol JUST DO IT! 2- High Energy Demands Here in the west, most people drive large vehicles to get around They require more fuel and create more pollution We use lots of electricity at our homes, sometimes needlessly. 2- High Energy Demands Oil has to be refined into gasoline before it can go into our vehicles Refineries create more pollution 2- High Energy Demands We have many homes and businesses which means that we need lots of electricity 2- High Energy Demands Electricity is produced by burning coal, which pollutes the air (That’s why electric cars only solve half of the pollution problem.) 2- High Energy Demands The coal is dug from a mine (probably in eastern Utah) This mining requires more energy output and more pollution This mining contributes to erosion. High Energy Demands - Payback Use frontrunner for commuting (if possible) High Energy Demands - Payback Carpool to school and combine trips to the store High Energy Demands - Payback Become part of the team that creates an alternate fuel source (The mother of all science fair projects) A Different Kind of Fuel Video High Energy Demands - Payback Program your thermostat at home drop the temperature when no-one is home High Energy Demands - Payback When regular bulbs burn out, replace them with energy-saving compact fluorescent bulbs High Energy Demands - Payback Turn off stuff when you’re not using it! Unplugging it is even better High Energy Demands - Payback Buy energy efficient appliances High Energy Demands - Payback Support programs to use alternate energy sources, such as wind power, geothermal energy, and hydro-electric power 3- Urban Sprawl Most people want to move to “the open” With lots of new houses, comes new roads and new shopping centers and new hospitals – bingo – we have unplanned sprawl with no “open” 3- Urban Sprawl Urban Sprawl creates habitat fragmentation 3- Urban Sprawl The areas of “open space” left after the humans move in are too small to support wildlife Think about the movie “Over the Hedge” 3- Urban Sprawl High concentrations of humans pollute the water 3- Urban Sprawl High concentrations of humans pollute the air 3- Urban Sprawl We dry up the wetlands to build houses, and destroy wildlife habitat Yes, we have wetlands in Utah. Urban Sprawl - Payback Create natural areas in your yard where wild animals are welcome Urban Sprawl - Payback Try not to use chemicals on your lawn or trees Urban Sprawl - Payback Become a city planner or serve on your city council to promote “smart growth.” Plan for wild spaces JUST DO IT! You owe it to the environment!