In some ways the carbon and hydrologic cycle are similar. Both are powered by the sun and are essential to life on Earth. The carbon cycle uses photosynthesis and respiration. The hydrologic cycle, also known as the water cycle, is the endless recycling of water on, under and above the Earth’s surface.
Carbon and Hydrologic Cycle
The effect of carbon in the hydrologic cycle is basically that it allows more water to evaporate into the atmosphere. Bodies of water including the oceans will soak up carbon that has been released into the atmosphere. Carbon is released when water runs over rocks and weathers them. The carbon is then added to the surface water and then into springs, lakes and rivers. The carbon eventually makes its way into the ocean.
Limestone that is on the ocean floor will collect carbon from the ocean and store it for a long time. The limestone holds the carbon for the rest of the carbon cycle until the carbon is released back into the atmosphere. This is accomplished when the limestone melts or is metamorphosed.
Carbon, just like water is constantly on the move and is being cycled through a process to keep things moving smoothly. Carbon is a component of carbon dioxide which is a greenhouse gas that traps heat in the atmosphere. This keeps the Earth from being a frozen world. This essentially helps the water cycle by allowing rain to fall instead of strictly ice. Groundwater is replenished more quickly and the water cycle moves smoother with the temperature fluctuations of the various seasons rather than staying in a constant cold state. The carbon and hydrologic cycle will continue to influence each other for years to come.