The Effects of Increased Co2 on Leaf Senescence of Yellow-Poplar and White Oak Seedlings
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The level of atmospheric CO2 has been increasing for the past 250 years due to industrialization and deforestation. This experiment, done at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, investigated the effects of increased CO2 concentration on leaf senescence of deciduous tree seedlings. The seedlings were planted in the ground inside open-top chambers. CO2 at levels of 300ppm + ambient, 150ppm + ambient, and Oppm + ambient were pumped into the chambers during the growing season. There were 2 rows of 3 chambers, each row containing the 3 different CO2 chambers. Chlorophyll, carotenoid, and soluble protein concentration were measured as well as photosynthetic rates over time. Increased CO2 concentration caused higher photosynthetic rates, but did not affect rates of senescence within the leaves of these seedlings.