The term carbon cycle is used to describe the ongoing exchange of carbon between ocean, land, organisms and atmosphere. These systems collect, affect, and process carbon, while organisms(plants and animals) create and exchange it.. Volcanoes in their work to create land mass, emit carbon, and so do all animals including humans of course. Plants, grasslands, forest and water vegetation collect carbon, serving as the lungs of the earth, by processing it into clean breathable oxygen and other needed compounds for life. Global warming affects this due to the fact that so much more carbon is now being released through acts of man.
In the modern age, the amount of CO2, (carbon emissions) is way up, warming the planet. Although it can easily be said that carbon emission is natural, it is still something which can be affected, for better or worse, by people making an effort to emit less, and protect the aforementioned plant and ocean world. Protecting those systems that collect carbon and act as what are called carbon sinks, helps keep a healthier life protecting balance.
The ongoing exchange in the carbon cycle allows for plants to continue this mutually supportive system which creates biodiversity and is the basis for life compatibility on earth. Carbon cycles exchange carbon, more-so than just actually creating or destroying it; in that they move it around between the four important systems that follow:
These are the Hydrosphere, the lithosphere, the biosphere, and the atmosphere. In the biosphere, all life is amassed. The biosphere may be thought of as the living carpet of life on earth. Also important in keeping the carbon cycle working are the hydrosphere, or water exchange system which processes carbon, mostly through weather, and the lithosphere, which is the geology, marine minerals and (abiota) non-living aspects of the earth that process so much of the minerals needed for carbon based life. The last collector of carbon is the atmosphere, which cooperating with weather, geology and life, affects how much, or how little carbon is absorbed. At present, global warming is a grave concern because so much carbon has been pumped into the atmosphere. Destruction of forest, acidification of oceans, emissions from industrial life, and more extreme weather, melting and wildfires, for example, are releasing ever more carbon into the atmosphere. At present also is increased methane from ranching and melting permafrost.
The way in which the increased carbon is concentrated has resulted in warmer years progressively for most of the years accumulated since 1880. The date of 1880, then, as a very important era of industrial revolution changes on the planet, is important because it marks a definitive time frame from which climatologists can pinpoint the affects of man made carbon emissions, and thus global warming.