Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Increased Ozone Will Damage Crops

Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Increased Ozone Will Damage Crops

Article excerpt

A novel Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) study concludes that increasing levels of ozone due to the growing use of fossil fuels will damage global vegetation, resulting in serious costs to the world's economy. The analysis focused on how three environmental changes (increases in temperature, carbon dioxide, and ozone) associated with human activity will affect crops, pastures, and forests.

The research shows that increases in temperature and carbon dioxide may actually benefit vegetation, especially in northern temperate regions. However, those benefits may be more than offset by the detrimental effects of increases in ozone, notably on crops. According to the analysis, if nothing is done, by 2100 the global value of crop production will fall by 10-12%.

While others have looked at how changes in climate and carbon dioxide concentrations may affect vegetation, Reilly and colleagues added to that mix changes in tropospheric ozone. Moreover, they looked at the combined impact of all three environmental "stressors" at once. The researchers performed their analysis using the MIT Integrated Global Systems Model, which combines linked state-of-the-art economic, climate, and agricultural computer models to project emissions of greenhouse gases and ozone precursors based on human activity and natural systems.

Results for the impacts of climate change and rising carbon dioxide concentrations (assuming there are no emissions restrictions) brought few surprises. For example, the estimated carbon dioxide and temperature increases would benefit vegetation in much of the world. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.