The Biosphere is the Earth’s ecosystem that sustains life on our planet. It includes the lithosphere’s surface, the lower region of the atmosphere and the hydrosphere (including oceans, lakes, rivers, streams, ice and clouds). The term biosphere is derived from Greek words meaning “life”. The biosphere is home to about 8.7 million species of plants, animals and microorganisms that thrive in a variety of habitats.
The primary function of the biosphere is to promote life on our planet by providing favourable climatic conditions and a source of energy as food to living organisms. The biosphere also recycles nutrients like oxygen and nitrogen for the benefit of all living organisms.
All living organisms depend on the processes of the biosphere to survive, and it is important that this amazingly complex system be maintained at a healthy level. There are several factors that can influence the biosphere’s health. These include natural events and human activities, which can alter the structure of the biosphere as well as the environment within which it is situated.
The biosphere is constantly evolving and adapting to environmental changes. This is largely due to the fact that the Earth’s tilt causes variations in climate and weather patterns throughout the year. Natural disasters such as volcanic eruptions can also impact the health of the biosphere. They often eject lava, rock and other debris which may destroy habitats. Additionally, human activities are a significant contributor to climate change and the destruction of biodiversity.