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19.1) Energy flow

19.1) Energy flow

 

Nearly all living things depend on the Sun to provide energy. This is harnessed by photosynthesising plants and the energy is then passed through food chains.

 

  • With the exception of atomic energy and tidal power, all the energy released on Earth is derived from sunlight.
  • The energy released by animals comes, ultimately, from plants that they or their prey eat and the plants depend on sunlight for making their food.
  • Photosynthesis is a process in which light energy is trapped by plants and converted into chemical energy (stored in molecules such as carbohydrates, fats and proteins).
  • Since all animals depend, in the end, on plants for their food, they therefore depend indirectly on sunlight.
  • Eventually, through one process or another, all the chemical energy in organisms is transferred to the environment.
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