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Photosynthesis vs. carbonization

  1. Feb 7, 2010 #1
    The major man-made sources of carbon dioxide are combusted wood, petroleum, coal and natural gas (all of which, in turn, originated from plant life).

    Can we counter this process of generating CO2 by capturing it with an enhanced global photosynthesis?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 8, 2010 #2


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    There is more than 1 type of photosysthesis used by plants.

    C3 photosynthesis is the typical photosynthesis historically used by most plants.

    C4 appeared on earth about 25Ma and is better in hot and dry conditions.
    A lot of grass plants use C4. These include crops such as sugercane, maize and sorghum.

    CAM plants can "idle"; thus saving precious energy and water during harsh times. However there are relatively few CAM type plants; Jade and pineapple are examples.

    All plants consume CO2 depending on how fast they grow. However, they also die and eventually decay; especially when wet and become emitters of CO2. So, the problem isn't so much as finding a better type of photosynethisis as it is in stopping the decay of plants.

    Simply burying plant material and covering it with clay to prevent oxidation would be a solution.
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