Response of Agronomic and Forest Species to Elevated Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide

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Science  22 Apr 1983:
Vol. 220, Issue 4595, pp. 428-429
DOI: 10.1126/science.220.4595.428


The effects of atmospheric carbon dioxide on corn, soybeans, loblolly pine, and sweetgum were studied in the field during a growing season. The plants were exposed to a range of concentrations of carbon dioxide day and night in open-topped, flow-through chambers. At a mean daytime carbon dioxide concentration of 910 parts per million, increases in total biomass ranged from 157 to 186 percent of the control values. Seed yield and wood volume increased and there were changes in plant anatomy and form. Net photosynthesis increased with increasing carbon dioxide concentration in soybeans and sweetgum, but was unaffected in corn. Water use efficiency also increased in corn, soybeans, and sweetgum.