∞ generated and posted on 2015.12.27 ∞

Environmental component that is not a living organism

Abiotic refers to environmental components that are not alive either because, depending on usage, because they are no longer alive, organic components of something that formerly was alive, or because they never were alive.

Typically inorganic components of environments are abiotic, that is, material that does not consist of complex carbon-based molecules (more strictly, these organic components consist of carbon atoms that are chemically bonded to something other than or in addition to oxygen).

At what point during decomposition does a biotic component of an environment become an abiotic component is not necessarily straightforward unless one excludes all but living organisms (and their associated components) from the definition of abiotic.