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Plants Importance On Earth Essay

538 words - 3 pages

Plants are very important to all life forms on earth. They help provide the vital source of oxygen that is required to sustain life. But how do plants provide oxygen? What do they do with carbon dioxide? Animals not only get the benefits of oxygen from plants, they also get nutrients by eating them. Without plants, all life forms that require oxygen would be non-existent.
Plants release oxygen through a process called photosynthesis. Photosynthesis needs three things in order to start this process. They are carbon dioxide, water and sunlight. Carbon dioxide is taken from the atmosphere and then passes through the stomata and into the air spaces of the spongy mesophyll cells. During this process, plants use the energy from the sun to split the water molecules into hydrogen and oxygen. The ...view middle of the document...


Enzymes within the plant then catalyze the combination of hydrogen and carbon dioxide to create a carbon compound that is called an intermediate. An intermediate is a compound used to continue a process to create a different compound. In plants, the intermediate is called phosphoglyceraldehyde (PGAL). PGAL goes on in the process to produce glucose, which the plant uses as fuel to survive. These reactions are called carbon-fixation reactions. When the plant has created more glucose than it needs to sustain life, it combines glucose molecules into larger carbohydrate molecules called starch. The starch molecules are stored within the large vacuoles in the plant cells. When necessary, the plant can break the starch molecules down to retrieve glucose for energy or to create other compounds, such as proteins, nucleic acids, or fats (which is how animals get nutrients by eating the plants).
Plants cannot survive in an air tight box. A plant needs four things to survive. They are soil, air, light and water. If any of these components are contaminated the plant will not meet its full potential or even survive at all.
Plants are essential for the survival of animal life. Without them, all life forms would seize to exist. Plants also need animals in order for them to survive. They help produce carbon dioxide, prevent overgrowth and provide nutrients to the soil for the plants to flourish. The earth is full of cycles; this is one of the important ones.

References:
Locke, John, 4 April 2007. Can a plant survive in an air tight container? Retrieved from http://en.allexperts.com/q/Biology-664/Plant-Survive-Air-Tight.htm
The Photosynthetic Process. Retrieved from http://www.life.illinois.edu/govindjee/paper/gov.html#51
Biosphere 2: The Experiment. Retrieved from http://www.biospheres.com/experimentchrono1.html
Photosynthesis Retrieved from http://www.emc.maricopa.edu/faculty/farabee/BIOBK/BiobookPS.html

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