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Gases and trees

  1. Aug 26, 2016 #1
    1)How much carbon dioxide does a mature tree use everyday?
    2)How much oxygen is used by a mature tree everyday?
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2016
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 26, 2016 #2


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    3 moles. o_O

    That question is way too vague. What kind of a tree? Of what size? In what climate?
  4. Aug 26, 2016 #3
    By a mature average tree.
  5. Aug 26, 2016 #4


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    Well, what is an "average" tree? A California redwood? A Southern Pine? An old-growth oak tree? A Douglas fir?

    There's going to be a range of numbers to answer your question.

    This link gives the abstract of an article from 1994 describing a respiration study performed on apple trees of various ages:


    It appears that this paper must be purchased, unless you have access thru an institution of higher learning.
  6. Aug 26, 2016 #5

    jim mcnamara

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    What you are asking: What are gas exchange rates in plants. Trees are large plants, only part of which are alive, the inner wood (xylem) is just dead structure, not living. AS a very rough estimate, the living component of a mature Angiosperm tree decreases with age as the tree trunk grows larger, so the mass percentage of living tissues is less than in a sapling.

    What you really want to know - how much CO2 is consumed by photosynthesis and O2 is consumed in respiration and how much CO2 is release by respiration. You have two competing processes in a living tree. None of these questions has a simple answer - what everyone is trying to tell you. Mass of living tissue, climate, insolation, species, growth substrate and so on all fudge things up. Not what you want to hear.

    Here are some pop science answers to your question in terms like you asked. When you ask scientific people vague questions like yours you usually get questions instead of answers. ... some statisfying but partially-scientific answers:
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2017
  7. Aug 28, 2016 #6


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    Considering that a fully mature tree can range from several meters to over 100 meters that range is quite large.

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