Well, we don’t actively use the nitrogen in the air we breathe, but that doesn’t mean it’s unimportant. When we breathe it in, we breathe it right back out. That nitrogen is in the wrong state. Nitrogen in the food we eat, however, helps our body grow. The fact that nitrogen is so abundant in the air and on Earth is important for life and growth. If it weren’t abundant in the air, I’m not sure that it would be abundant in other forms.
Also, nitrogen is very important to plant life an thus it would be impossible for us to live without it.
Atmospheric nitrogen is not in a form that is digestible by us – like letusgambol said.
However, it is also not in a form that is usable to plants. Plants depend on microbial organisms (like Rhizobia) that convert nitrogen into a compound that plants can use.
Still, nitrogen is absolutely vital for the entire chain of living things.
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