UCSB Science Line
Sponge Spicules Nerve Cells Galaxy Abalone Shell Nickel Succinate X-ray Lens Lupine
UCSB Science Line
Home
How it Works
Ask a Question
Search Topics
Webcasts
Our Scientists
Science Links
Contact Information
Are all non-living things abiotic? We are trying to figure out if abiotic factors are things that are only naturally occurring, or if they can be man-made? For example, if there is plastic (trash/pollution) in an ecosystem, is it considered an abiotic factor because it could have a impact on the living things?
Question Date: 2017-10-16
Answer 1:

Abiotic means something that does not contain biological material or living things . A chemical like salt is abiotic. Plastic is abiotic because it is not living. Abiotic things can and do impact living things. Sunlight is abiotic but as you know it has a large impact on living things. Another example is, as you mentioned, the chemicals in the air from pollution that can impact living things.



Click Here to return to the search form.

University of California, Santa Barbara Materials Research Laboratory National Science Foundation
This program is co-sponsored by the National Science Foundation and UCSB School-University Partnerships
Copyright © 2017 The Regents of the University of California,
All Rights Reserved.
UCSB Terms of Use