Our Environment Questions & Answers

Hi Everyone!! This article will share Our Environment Questions & Answers.

In one of my previous posts, I have shared the objective type questions & answers of Our Environment so, make sure to check that post as well.

Our Environment Questions & Answers

Question 1: Define the following:

(a) Ecology

Answer: The branch of science that studies the interaction between the living organisms and their surrounding is called ecology.

(b) Environmental degradation

Answer: Environmental degradation refers to loss of biodiversity (reduction in number of plant and animal species), depletion and degradation of natural resources due to pollution, overexploitation and obliteration.

(c) Hydrosphere

Answer: Hydrosphere refers to the total water found on our planet in the oceans, seas, rivers, lakes, as well as underground.

Question 2: What is the composition of atmosphere?

Answer: The atmosphere is a mixture of nitrogen (78%), oxygen (21%), other gases (1%), water vapour and dust particles.

Question 3: What is meant by environment? Explain the major components of the environment.

Answer: The word environment is derived from the French word ‘environer’ meaning surrounding. Environment encompasses all living and non-living components of man’s surrounding. Thus, environment is everything that surrounds and influences a living organism. It includes the place (where we live), the flora, the fauna, the people, as well as man made things.

The environment can be broadly classified into – natural environment and man-made environment.

1. Natural environment includes the physical and biological components of the earth.

a. Physical environment comprises of the non-living components like air, water, land.
b. Biological environment comprises of living components such as plants, animals including human beings and even microbes (microorganism).

2. Human environment includes all man-made creations, behaviour and relationships that are guided by socio-cultural, economic as well as political conditions.

Question 4: Why would the earth be barren without the atmosphere?

Answer: The atmosphere prevents the sun’s harmful rays from reaching the earth’s surface. It controls the temperature during day and night. It also controls humidity and pressure.

Our Environment Questions & Answers

Question 5: Write a note on Lithosphere.


  • It is the outermost layer of the Earth, also known as crust, and is composed of rocks and minerals.
  • The surface of the Earth is uneven due to presence of landforms such as mountains, hills, valleys and plateaus.
  • Lithosphere extends over both the continents and water bodies that support various kinds of activities such as settlement, agriculture, industry, etc. essential for existence.

Question 6: Write a short note on Biosphere.

Answer: Biosphere, that supports a large variety of life, is a narrow zone formed by interaction among three spheres, namely, land, water and air. The term biosphere comes from Greek word bios meaning life and Latin word sphaera which means the total range. All living organisms in the biosphere can be categorized into producers(autotrophs), consumers (heterotrophs) and decomposers and they are interdependent on one another.

Autotrophs such as plants, algae and some bacteria prepare their own food by using water, sunlight and carbon dioxide from the environment. The heterotrophs, on the other hand, are organisms that are dependent on other plants and animals for their survival. All herbivores, carnivores and omnivores fall in this category. While decomposers such as fungi and bacteria, perform the task of recycling nutrients back into the Earth by decomposing dead organisms.

Question 7: Explain the causes of Environmental Degradation.


  • Inappropriate land use, such as poor farming techniques, over cultivation, overgrazing and deforestation leads to soil erosion (removal of the top layer of the soil).
  • Inappropriate disposal of waste products and pollutants both from households as well as industries harms the natural environment.
  • Rapidly increasing population puts pressure on the limited natural resources, which leads to loss of biodiversity as well as pollution.
  • Rapid and unplanned urban development has led to deterioration of air and water quality and generation of wastes.
  • Increasing transport networks also have a negative impact on the environment. For instance, construction of ports and harbours disturbs the sensitive ecosystem of the coastal areas.

Question 8: Give reasons.

(a) Hydrosphere is very essential to mankind.


Water supports all forms of life. Oceans are source of food and minerals. Oceans facilitate trade and transportation. They also help in moderating the climate of coastal regions. Freshwater is used for many domestic, agricultural and industrial uses. Hence, hydrosphere is very essential to mankind.

(b) Both natural and human environment is constantly changing.

Answer: Over the ages, humans have adapted themselves to their natural environment by modifying their needs.
For example – people living in deserts wear cotton clothes, cover their heads with turbans to ward off heat, build houses with thick walls to keep themselves cool and grow crops such as ragi, jowar that require less water.
Thus, human being is the only living organism who has consciously and continuously transformed the environment in which they live to fulfil their needs.

(c) Change in one part of the environment causes a ripple effect of change throughout other parts of environment.


  • A change in the size of one population in a food chain influences the entire natural environment.
  • For instance, if there are too many deer, there will be insufficient shrubs and grasses for all of them to eat.
  • Many will go hungry and die.
  • Fewer deer mean less food is available for the tigers and again many will starve to death.
  • When there are fewer tigers, the deer population will increase which will again disturb the balance of nature.

So, these were Our Environment Questions & Answers.