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The Impact of Human Activities on the Natural Carbon Cycle

Classroom/Laboratory Activity

A classroom/laboratory activity to understand the carbon cycle, and to explore how human activities may affect the natural carbon cycle.

Students will run a simulation to explore how an increase in fossil fuel use will affect the natural carbon cycle, and will discuss the possible impacts on flora and fauna.

Use this tool to help your students find answers to:

  1. Which components in the carbon cycle act as carbon sinks?
  2. What are the possible impacts of deforestation on the natural carbon cycle? How might these changes affect the Earth’s climate?
About Tool
Tool NameThe Habitable Planet – Carbon Lab
DisciplineChemistry, Earth‌ ‌Sciences‌, Environmental Sciences
Topic(s) in DisciplineCarbon Cycle, Biogeochemical Cycles, Environmental Chemistry
Climate TopicLong-term Feedback Mechanisms
Type of toolClassroom/Laboratory Activity 
Grade LevelHigh School
Translation     –
Developed byAnnenberg Learner
Hosted atAnnenberg Learner
Computer SkillsIntermediate


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