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Organic matter, organic material, or natural organic matter refers to the large source of carbon-based compounds found within natural and engineered, terrestrial, and aquatic environments. It is
matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that can be touched are ultimately composed of atoms, which are made up of interacting subatomic particl ...
composed of
organic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during ...
s that have come from the feces and remains of
organism In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Physiology, physiological me ...

organism
s such as
plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Energy transformation, convert light energy into chemical energy that, through cellular respiration, can later be released to fuel ...

plant
s and
animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular A multicellular organism is an organism In biology, an organism () is any organic, life, living system that functions as an individual entity. All organisms are composed of cells ...

animal
s. Organic molecules can also be made by chemical reactions that do not involve life. Basic structures are created from
cellulose Cellulose is an organic compound with the chemical formula, formula , a polysaccharide consisting of a linear chain of several hundred to many thousands of glycosidic bond, β(1→4) linked glucose, D-glucose units. Cellulose is an important stru ...

cellulose
,
tannin Tannins (or tannoids) are a class of , ic s that bind to and s and various other organic compounds including s and s. The term ''tannin'' (from ''tanner'', from ''tannāre'', from ''tannum'', ) refers to the use of oak and other bark ...
,
cutin Cutin is one of two wax , a typical wax ester. Image:Beeswax foundation.jpg, Commercial honeycomb foundation, made by pressing beeswax between patterned metal rollers. Waxes are a diverse class of organic compounds that are lipophilic, malleab ...
, and
lignin Lignin is a class of complex organic polymer A polymer (; Greek ''poly- Poly, from the Greek :wikt:πολύς, πολύς meaning "many" or "much", may refer to: Businesses * China Poly Group Corporation, a Chinese business group, and its s ...

lignin
, along with other various
protein Proteins are large biomolecule , showing alpha helices, represented by ribbons. This poten was the first to have its suckture solved by X-ray crystallography by Max Perutz and Sir John Cowdery Kendrew in 1958, for which they received a No ...

protein
s,
lipid In and , a lipid is a macro that is soluble in solvents. are typically s used to dissolve other naturally occurring hydrocarbon lipid s that do not (or do not easily) dissolve in water, including s, es, s, fat-soluble s (such as vitamins A, ...
s, and
carbohydrate is a disaccharide A disaccharide (also called a double sugar or ''biose'') is the sugar formed when two monosaccharides are joined by glycosidic linkage. Like monosaccharides, disaccharides are simple sugars soluble in water. Three common ex ...
s. Organic matter is very important in the movement of nutrients in the environment and plays a role in water retention on the surface of the planet.


Formation

Living organisms In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Physiology, physiological mecha ...
are composed of organic compounds. In life, they secrete or excrete organic material into their environment, shed body parts such as leaves and roots and after organisms die, their bodies are broken down by bacterial and fungal action. Larger molecules of organic matter can be formed from the polymerization of different parts of already broken down matter. The composition of natural organic matter depends on its origin, transformation mode, age, and existing environment, thus its bio-physicochemical functions vary with different environments.Nicola Senesi, Baoshan Xing, and P.M. Huang, Biophysico-Chemical Processes Involving Natural Nonlifiidulfitving Organic Matter in Environmental Systems, New York: IUPAC, 2006.


Natural ecosystem functions

Organic matter is common throughout the
ecosystem An ecosystem (or ecological system) consists of all the organisms and the physical environment with which they interact. These biotic and abiotic components are linked together through nutrient cycles and energy flows. Energy enters the syst ...

ecosystem
and is cycled through decomposition processes by soil microbial communities that are crucial for nutrient availability. After degrading and reacting, it can move into
soil Surface-water- gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland.">Northern_Ireland.html" ;"title="glacial till, Northern Ireland">glacial till, Northern Ireland. Soil is a mixture of organic matter, minerals, gases, liquids, and organisms tha ...

soil
and mainstream
water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an , transparent, tasteless, odorless, and , which is the main constituent of 's and the s of all known living organisms (in which it acts as a ). It is vital for all known forms of , even though it provide ...

water
via waterflow. Organic matter provides nutrition to living organisms. Organic matter acts as a
buffer Buffer may refer to: Science * Buffer gas, an inert or nonflammable gas * Buffer solution, a solution used to prevent changes in pH * Buffering agent, the weak acid or base in a buffer solution * Lysis buffer, in cell biology * Metal ion buffer * M ...
in aqueous solution to maintain a neutral
pH
pH
in the environment. The buffer acting component has been proposed to be relevant for neutralizing
acid rain Acid rain is a rain or any other form of Precipitation (meteorology), precipitation that is unusually acidic, meaning that it has elevated levels of hydrogen ions (low pH). It can have harmful effects on plants, aquatic animals, and infras ...
.Steve Cabaniss, Greg Madey, Patricia Maurice, Yingping Zhou, Laura Leff, Olacheesy head Bob Wetzel, Jerry Leenheer, and Bob Wershaw, comps, Stochastic Synthesis of Natural Organic Matter, UNM, ND, KSU, UNC, USGS, 22 Apr 2007.


Source cycle

Some organic matter not already in the soil comes from
groundwater Groundwater is the water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an inorganic, transparent, tasteless, odorless, and nearly colorless chemical substance, which is the main constituent of Earth's hydrosphere and the fluids of all known living ...

groundwater
. When the groundwater saturates the soil or sediment around it, organic matter can freely move between the phases. Groundwater has its own sources of natural organic matter including: * organic matter deposits, such as
kerogen Kerogen is solid, insoluble organic matter Organic matter, organic material, or natural organic matter refers to the large source of Carbon compounds, carbon-based compounds found within natural and engineered, terrestrial, and aquatic environm ...
and
coal Coal is a combustible black or brownish-black sedimentary rock, formed as stratum, rock strata called coal seams. Coal is mostly carbon with variable amounts of other Chemical element, elements, chiefly hydrogen, sulfur, oxygen, and nitrogen ...

coal
. * soil and sediment organic matter. * organic matter infiltrating into the subsurface from rivers, lakes, and marine systems." Organisms decompose into organic matter, which is then transported and recycled. Not all biomass migrates, some is rather stationary, turning only over the course of millions of years.


Soil organic matter

The organic matter in
soil Surface-water- gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland.">Northern_Ireland.html" ;"title="glacial till, Northern Ireland">glacial till, Northern Ireland. Soil is a mixture of organic matter, minerals, gases, liquids, and organisms tha ...

soil
derives from plants, animals and microorganisms. In a forest, for example, leaf litter and woody material falls to the forest floor. This is sometimes referred to as organic material. When it decays to the point in which it is no longer recognizable, it is called soil organic matter. When the organic matter has broken down into a stable substance that resist further decomposition it is called
humus In soil science, humus (derived in 1790–1800 from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known ...

humus
. Thus soil organic matter comprises all of the organic matter in the soil exclusive of the material that has not decayed. An important property of
soil organic matter Soil organic matter (SOM) is the organic matter Organic matter, organic material, or natural organic matter refers to the large source of Carbon compounds, carbon-based compounds found within natural and engineered, terrestrial, and aquatic envi ...
is that it improves the capacity of a soil to hold water and nutrients, and allows their slow release, thereby improving the conditions for plant growth. Another advantage of humus is that it helps the soil to stick together which allows
nematode The nematodes ( or grc-gre, Νηματώδη; la, Nematoda) or roundworms constitute the phylum Nematoda (also called Nemathelminthes), with plant-parasitic nematodes also known as eelworms. They are a diverse animal phylum inhabiting a broa ...

nematode
s, or microscopic bacteria, to easily decay the nutrients in the soil.Crow, W. T
“Organic Matter, Green Manures and Cover Crops For Nematode Management.”
University of Florida. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Feb. 2009 Web 10 October 2009
There are several ways to quickly increase the amount of humus. Combining compost, plant or animal materials/waste, or green manure with soil will increase the amount of humus in the soil. # Compost: decomposed organic material. # Plant and animal material and waste: dead plants or plant waste such as leaves or bush and tree trimmings, or animal manure. # Green manure: plants or plant material that is grown for the sole purpose of being incorporated with soil. These three materials supply nematodes and bacteria with nutrients for them to thrive and produce more humus, which will give plants enough nutrients to survive and grow.


Priming effect

The '' priming effect'' is characterized by intense changes in the natural process of soil organic matter (SOM) turnover, resulting from relatively moderate intervention with the soil. The phenomenon is generally caused by either pulsed or continuous changes to inputs of fresh organic matter (FOM). Priming effects usually result in an acceleration of mineralization due to a ''trigger'' such as the FOM inputs. The cause of this increase in decomposition has often been attributed to an increase in microbial activity resulting from higher energy and nutrient availability released from the FOM. After the input of FOM, specialized microorganisms are believed to grow quickly and only decompose this newly added organic matter. The turnover rate of SOM in these areas is at least one order of magnitude higher than the bulk soil. Other soil treatments, besides organic matter inputs, which lead to this short-term change in turnover rates, include "input of mineral fertilizer, exudation of organic substances by roots, mere mechanical treatment of soil or its drying and rewetting." Priming effects can be either ''positive'' or ''negative'' depending on the reaction of the soil with the added substance. A positive priming effect results in the acceleration of mineralization while a negative priming effect results in immobilization, leading to N unavailability. Although most changes have been documented in C and N pools, the priming effect can also be found in phosphorus and sulfur, as well as other nutrients. Löhnis was the first to discover the priming effect phenomenon in 1926 through his studies of
green manure In agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentism, sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domestication, domesticated specie ...

green manure
decomposition and its effects on
legume A legume () is a plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Energy transformation, convert light energy into chemical energy that, through cellular respiration, can ...

legume
plants in soil. He noticed that when adding fresh organic residues to the soil, it resulted in intensified mineralization by the humus N. It was not until 1953, though, that the term ''priming effect'' was given by Bingeman in his paper titled, ''The effect of the addition of organic material on the decomposition of an organic soil''. Several other terms had been used before ''priming effect'' was coined, including priming action, added nitrogen interaction (ANI), extra N and additional N. Despite these early contributions, the concept of the priming effect was widely disregarded until about the 1980s-1990s. The priming effect has been found in many different studies and is regarded as a common occurrence, appearing in most plant soil systems. However, the mechanisms which lead to the priming effect are more complex then originally thought, and still remain generally misunderstood. Although there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding the reason for the priming effect, a few ''undisputed facts'' have emerged from the collection of recent research: # The priming effect can arise either instantaneously or very shortly (potentially days or weeks) after the addition of a substance is made to the soil. # The priming effect is larger in soils that are rich in C and N as compared to those poor in these nutrients. # Real priming effects have not been observed in sterile environments. # The size of the priming effect increases as the amount of added treatment to the soil increases. Recent findings suggest that the same priming effect mechanisms acting in soil systems may also be present in aquatic environments, which suggests a need for broader considerations of this phenomenon in the future.


Decomposition

One suitable definition of organic matter is biological material in the process of decaying or
decomposing Decomposition is the process by which dead organic substances are broken down into simpler organic or inorganic matter such as carbon dioxide, water, simple sugars and mineral salts. The process is a part of the nutrient cycle and is essential f ...
, such as
humus In soil science, humus (derived in 1790–1800 from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known ...

humus
. A closer look at the biological material in the process of decaying reveals so-called
organic compounds , CH4; is among the simplest organic compounds. In chemistry Chemistry is the science, scientific study of the properties and behavior of matter. It is a natural science that covers the Chemical element, elements that make up matter to the c ...
( biological molecules) in the process of breaking up (disintegrating). The main processes by which soil molecules disintegrates are by
bacteria Bacteria (; common noun bacteria, singular bacterium) are ubiquitous, mostly free-living organisms often consisting of one Cell (biology), biological cell. They constitute a large domain (biology), domain of prokaryotic microorganisms. Typ ...

bacteria
l or
fungal A fungus (plural The plural (sometimes list of glossing abbreviations, abbreviated ), in many languages, is one of the values of the grammatical number, grammatical category of number. The plural of a noun typically denotes a quantity great ...

fungal
. If bacteria or fungi were not present on Earth, the process of decomposition would have proceeded much slower.


Organic chemistry

Measurements of organic matter generally measure only
organic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during ...
s or
carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a with the C and 6. It is lic and —making four s available to form s. It belongs to group 14 of the periodic table. Carbon makes up only about 0.025 percent of Earth's crust. Three occur naturally, ...

carbon
, and so are only an approximation of the level of once-living or decomposed matter. Some definitions of organic matter likewise only consider "organic matter" to refer to only the carbon content, or organic compounds, and do not consider the origins or decomposition of the matter. In this sense, not all organic compounds are created by living organisms, and living organisms do not only leave behind organic material. A clam's shell, for example, while
biotic Biotics describe living or once living components of a community; for example organisms, such as animals and plants. Biotic may refer to: *Life, the condition of living organisms *Biology, the study of life *Biotic material, which is derived from l ...
, does not contain much
organic carbon Total organic carbon (TOC) is the amount of carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an ...
, so may not be considered organic matter in this sense. Conversely,
urea Urea, also known as carbamide, is an organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (form chains with other carbon s), millions of organic compounds are known. The study of the prop ...

urea
is one of many organic compounds that can be synthesized without any biological activity. Organic matter is heterogeneous and very complex. Generally, organic matter, in terms of weight, is: * 45–55%
carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a with the C and 6. It is lic and —making four s available to form s. It belongs to group 14 of the periodic table. Carbon makes up only about 0.025 percent of Earth's crust. Three occur naturally, ...

carbon
* 35–45%
oxygen Oxygen is the chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an element is a pure substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same ...

oxygen
* 3–5%
hydrogen Hydrogen is the chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol H and atomic number 1. Hydrogen is the lightest element. At standard temperature and pressure, standard conditions hydrogen is a gas of diatomic molecules having the che ...

hydrogen
* 1–4%
nitrogen Nitrogen is the chemical element upright=1.0, 500px, The chemical elements ordered by link=Periodic table In chemistry Chemistry is the science, scientific study of the properties and behavior of matter. It is a natural science ...

nitrogen
The molecular weights of these compounds can vary drastically, depending on if they repolymerize or not, from 200 to 20,000 amu. Up to one third of the
carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a with the C and 6. It is lic and —making four s available to form s. It belongs to group 14 of the periodic table. Carbon makes up only about 0.025 percent of Earth's crust. Three occur naturally, ...

carbon
present is in
aromatic compounds Aromatic compounds are those chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more than one chemical element, element held toget ...
in which the carbon atoms form usually six-membered rings. These rings are very stable due to
resonance stabilization Resonance describes the phenomenon of increased amplitude The amplitude of a Periodic function, periodic Variable (mathematics), variable is a measure of its change in a single Period (mathematics), period (such as frequency, time or Wavelen ...
, so they are difficult to break down. The aromatic rings are also susceptible to
electrophilic In chemistry Chemistry is the science, scientific study of the properties and behavior of matter. It is a natural science that covers the Chemical element, elements that make up matter to the chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, mo ...

electrophilic
and
nucleophilic In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they underg ...

nucleophilic
attack from other electron-donating or electron-accepting material, which explains the possible polymerization to create larger molecules of organic matter. There are also reactions that occur with organic matter and other material in the soil to create compounds never seen before. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to characterize these because so little is known about natural organic matter in the first place. Research is currently being done to figure out more about these new compounds and how many of them are being formed."Topic Snapshot: Natural Organic Material", American Water Works Association Research Foundation, 2007, 22 April 2007


Aquatic

Aquatic organic matter can be further divided into two components: (1) dissolved organic matter (DOM), measured as
colored dissolved organic matter Colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM) is the optically measurable component of dissolved organic matter Organic matter, organic material, or natural organic matter refers to the large source of carbon-based compounds found within natural a ...
(CDOM) or
dissolved organic carbon Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is the fraction of organic carbon Operational definition, operationally defined as that which can pass through a filter with a pore size typically between 0.22 and 0.7 micrometre, micrometers. The fraction remaini ...
(DOC), and (2)
particulate organic matter Particulate organic matter (POM) is a fraction of total organic matter operationally defined as that which does not pass through a filter pore size that typically ranges in size from 0.053 and 2 milimeters. Particulate organic carbon (POC) is a c ...
(POM). They are typically differentiated by that which can pass through a 0.45 micrometre filter (DOM), and that which cannot (POM).


Detection

Organic matter plays an important role in drinking water and wastewater treatment and recycling, natural aquatic ecosystems, aquaculture, and environmental rehabilitation. It is therefore important to have reliable methods of detection and characterisation, for both short- and long-term monitoring. A variety of analytical detection methods for organic matter have existed for up to decades, to describe and characterise organic matter. These include, but are not limited to: total and dissolved organic carbon,
mass spectrometry Mass spectrometry (MS) is an analytical technique that is used to measure the mass-to-charge ratio The mass-to-charge ratio (''m''/''Q'') is a physical quantity A physical quantity is a physical property of a material or system that can be Quant ...
,
nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, most commonly known as NMR spectroscopy or magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), is a Spectroscopy, spectroscopic technique to observe local magnetic fields around Atomic nucleus, atomic nuclei. The sample ...
, , UV-Visible spectroscopy, and
fluorescence spectroscopy Fluorescence spectroscopy (also known as fluorimetry or spectrofluorometry) is a type of electromagnetic spectroscopy that analyzes fluorescence light. Fluorescence is the emission of light Light or visible light is electromagnetic rad ...
. Each of these methods has its own advantages and limitations.


Water purification

The same capability of natural organic matter that helps with water retention in soil creates problems for current water purification methods. In water, organic matter can still bind to metal ions and minerals. These bound molecules are not necessarily stopped by the purification process, but do not cause harm to any humans, animals, or plants. However, because of the high level of reactivity of organic matter, by-products that do not contain nutrients can be made. These by-products can induce
biofouling Biofouling or biological fouling is the accumulation of microorganism A microorganism, or microbe,, ''mikros'', "small") and ''organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organismos'') is any ...
, which essentially clogs water filtration systems in water purification facilities, as the by-products are larger than membrane pore sizes. This clogging problem can be treated by chlorine disinfection ( chlorination), which can break down residual material that clogs systems. However, chlorination can form disinfection by-products. Water with organic matter can be disinfected with
ozone Ozone (), or trioxygen, is an inorganic molecule A molecule is an electrically Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion Image:Leaving Yongsan Station.jpg, 300px, Motion involves a cha ...

ozone
-initiated radical reactions. The ozone (three oxygens) has very strong
oxidation Redox (reduction–oxidation, pronunciation: or ) is a type of chemical reaction A chemical reaction is a process that leads to the chemical transformation of one set of chemical substance A chemical substance is a form of matter ...

oxidation
characteristics. It can form
hydroxyl A hydroxy or hydroxyl group is a functional group with the chemical formula -OH and composed of one oxygen Oxygen is the chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the ...

hydroxyl
radicals (OH) when it decomposes, which will react with the organic matter to shut down the problem of biofouling.Cho, Min, Hyenmi Chung, and Jeyong Yoon, "Disinfection of Water Containing Natural Organic Matter by Using Ozone-Initiated Radical Reactions," Abstract, Applied and Environmental Microbiology Vol. 69 No.4 (2003): 2284-2291.


Vitalism

The equation of "organic" with living organisms comes from the now-abandoned idea of
vitalism Vitalism is the belief that "living organisms are fundamentally different from non-living entities because they contain some non-physical element or are governed by different principles than are inanimate things". Where vitalism explicitly invoke ...
that attributed a special force to life that alone could create organic substances. This idea was first questioned after the artificial synthesis of urea by
Friedrich Wöhler Friedrich Wöhler () FRS(For) HFRSE Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (FRSE) is an award granted to individuals that the Royal Society of Edinburgh, Scotland's national academy of science and Literature, letters, judged to be "em ...

Friedrich Wöhler
in 1828.


See also

*
Biofact (biology) In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Physiology, physiological mechanisms, D ...
*
Biomass Biomass is plant or animal material used as fuel to produce electricity Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion Image:Leaving Yongsan Station.jpg, 300px, Motion involves a change in position ...

Biomass
*
Detritus In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Physiology, physiological mechanisms ...
*
Humus In soil science Soil science is the study of soil Surface-water- gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland.">Northern_Ireland.html" ;"title="glacial till, Northern Ireland">glacial till, Northern Ireland. Soil is a mixture of ...

Humus
* Organic geochemistry * Sedimentary organic matter *
Total organic carbon Total organic carbon (TOC) is the amount of carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an ...
Compare with: *
Biological tissue In biology, tissue is a Biological organisation#Levels, biological organizational level between cell (biology), cells and a complete organ (biology), organ. A tissue is an ensemble of similar cells and their extracellular matrix from the same o ...
*
Biomolecule , showing alpha helices, represented by ribbons. This poten was the first to have its suckture solved by X-ray crystallography by Max Perutz and Sir John Cowdery Kendrew in 1958, for which they received a Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize i ...
*
Biotic material Biotic material or biological derived material is any material that originates from living organisms. Most such materials contain carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, ...
*
Cellular component 300px, A biological_machine.html"_;"title="ribosome_is_a_biological_machine">ribosome_is_a_biological_machine_that_utilizes_protein_dynamics_on_ ribosome_is_a_biological_machine_that_utilizes_protein_dynamics">biological_machine.html"_;"title="r ...
* Organic production


References


Bibliography

* * Cabaniss, Steve, Greg Madey, Patricia Maurice, Yingping Zhou, Laura Leff, Ola Olapade, Bob Wetzel, Jerry Leenheer, and Bob Wershaw, comps. Stochastic Synthesis of Natural Organic Matter. UNM, ND, KSU, UNC, USGS. 22 Apr. 2007. * Cho, Min, Hyenmi Chung, and Jeyong Yoon. "Disinfection of Water Containing Natural Organic Matter by Using Ozone-Initiated Radical Reactions." Abstract. Applied and Environmental Microbiology Vol. 69 No.4 (2003): 2284–2291. * Fortner, John D., Joseph B. Hughes, Jae-Hong Kim, and Hoon Hyung. "Natural Organic Matter Stabilizes Carbon Nanotubes in the Aqueous Phase." Abstract. Environmental Science & Technology Vol. 41 No. 1 (2007): 179–184. * "Researchers Study Role of Natural Organic Matter in Environment." Science Daily 20 Dec. 2006. 22 Apr. 2007 . * Senesi, Nicola, Baoshan Xing, and P.m. Huang. Biophysico-Chemical Processes Involving Natural Nonliving Organic Matter in Environmental Systems. New York: IUPAC, 2006. * "Table 1: Surface Area, Volume, and Average Depth of Oceans and Seas." Encyclopædia Britannica. * "Topic Snapshot: Natural Organic Material." American Water Works Association Research Foundation. 2007. 22 Apr. 2007 . * United States of America. United States Geological Survey. Earth's Water Distribution. 10 May 2007. * Water Sheds: Organic Matter. North Carolina State University. 1 May 2007 . {{DEFAULTSORT:Organic Matter Organic compounds Organic chemistry