The key difference between biosphere and lithosphere is that the biosphere is a part of the crust and atmosphere that support living matter while the lithosphere is the solid shell of the Earth that includes the crust and part of the uppermost mantle.
There are four main spheres in the Planet Earth such as hydrosphere, biosphere, lithosphere and atmosphere. These spheres constitute everything; water, land, air and living matter that belongs to Earth. Accordingly, all these four spheres interconnect with each other.
Living organisms need oxygen to breathe, shelter to live and food to eat/survive. On the other hand, plants need sunlight and carbon dioxide to produce foods, nutrients and water in the soil to survive and establish on land, etc. Hence, all these living organisms interact with each sphere for their survival. Among the four spheres, biosphere and lithosphere are two important parts. The lithosphere is the rigid, mechanically strong, outer layer of the Earth while the biosphere is the part of the Earth and its atmosphere that support living organisms.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Biosphere
3. What is Lithosphere
4. Similarities Between Biosphere and Lithosphere
5. Side by Side Comparison – Biosphere vs Lithosphere in Tabular Form
What is Biosphere?
The biosphere is one of the four spheres of Earth that includes living matter; bacteria, animals, plants, fungi, etc. It is the part of the Earth where life exists. Biosphere interacts with other three major spheres; hydrosphere, atmosphere, and lithosphere.
Likewise, other three spheres support the components of the biosphere for their survival. Living organisms live on the lithosphere and obtain nutrients. They further obtain water from the hydrosphere. Moreover, the animals breathe air in the atmosphere. Hence without all these spheres, life won’t exist on the Earth.
What is Lithosphere?
The lithosphere is the hard and solid outer coating of the earth that includes all types of lands. Hence, it constitutes rocks, soils and minerals. It is the sphere where animals live, and plants grow. In simple words, the components of the biosphere are dependant and live on the lithosphere. They carry out all their activities on the lithosphere. However, once animals and plants die, their decomposition occurs on the lithosphere and decayed matter (minerals and nutrients) contributes to the renewal of the lithosphere.
Moreover, there are two major types of lithosphere; namely, oceanic lithosphere and continental lithosphere. Oceanic lithosphere constitutes oceanic crust while the continental lithosphere constitutes continental crust. Furthermore, there are 15 tectonic plates in the lithosphere.
What are the Similarities Between Biosphere and Lithosphere?
- Biosphere and Lithosphere are two of the four spheres of Earth.
- Both are interconnected to each other.
- Components of the biosphere live on the lithosphere and absorb nutrients and water from it. Furthermore, they carry out all their activities on the lithosphere.
- In short, the biosphere depends on the lithosphere for survival while the lithosphere depends on the biosphere for its renewal.
What is the Difference Between Biosphere and Lithosphere?
Biosphere includes a part of the earth that supports life. On the other hand, the lithosphere is the solid outer layer of the earth that includes uppermost part of the mantle and crust. Therefore, this is the key difference between biosphere and lithosphere. Moreover, another difference between biosphere and lithosphere is that the biosphere includes living components while lithosphere includes nonliving matter.
Furthermore, the biosphere and lithosphere interact with each other. Components of the biosphere live and obtain nutrients from the lithosphere while the decomposed matter of biosphere contributes to the renewal of the lithosphere.
The below infographic presents the difference between biosphere and lithosphere in a comparative manner.
Summary – Biosphere vs Lithosphere
Biosphere and lithosphere are two of the four spheres of the Earth. Biosphere includes all living matter including plants and animals while the lithosphere includes a hard and solid outermost layer of the earth; all lands. Hence, this is the key difference between biosphere and lithosphere. However, these two spheres are interconnected. That is; the components of the biosphere live on the lithosphere and obtain nutrients and minerals from it. Furthermore, they carry out all their activities on the lithosphere. On the other hand, lithosphere depends on the biosphere for its renewal. When animals and plants die, their nutrients and other matter contribute to the renewal of the lithosphere. Thus, this summarizes the difference between biosphere and lithosphere.