About Carbon, part-1

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Where does plant mass come from? The Soil?

This is partly wrong, proven by flemish scientist Jan Baptist van Helmont in the 17th century, who grew a willow tree for over 5 years, and found that the weight of the soil which the tree had been grown in, had hardly changed.
Later Nicolas-Théodore de Saussure enclosed plants in glass and strictly monitored the amount of water and carbon given to them. He demonstrated that, life is build from carbon dioxide in the air and hydrogen compounds from water, and minerals from the soil. This instigated the knowledge of photosynthesis; the ability of the plants to use solar energy and combine it with hydrogen and carbon dioxide to produce matter and food in the form of sugars.

This work of plants via photosynthesis move giant amounts of carbon yearly, and a lot of the carbon which plants take in is stored in the soil in a ‘carbon pool’, that is, if the soil is healthy. If the soil is healthy and there is a substantial layer of humus (complex organic matter) in the topsoil, a lot of this carbon is then stored in the soil in a stable form. This is also called ‘soil carbon’, and in this form, the carbon molecules are not airborne and does not disturb the climate, on the contrary; soil carbon mobilizes the life in the soil and is useful in this form.

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