General Question

whywhywhywhy's avatar

Do plants release carbon dioxide as a by-product of their cellular process?

Asked by whywhywhywhy (13points) May 11th, 2020

. Plants release carbon dioxide as a by-product of their cellular proce

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11 Answers

LostInParadise's avatar

Plants use photosynthesis to turn carbon dioxide and water into sugars and oxygen. The reverse process is respiration, which takes the sugar and oxygen are releases carbon dioxide. Both plants and animals use respiration to tap into the energy stored in the sugars.

seawulf575's avatar

Plant don’t release carbon dioxide, they use carbon dioxide as a source of carbon in photosynthesis.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Yep they convert the carbon along with water to make wood, leaves, etc, loaded with hydrocarbons.

Jeruba's avatar

No, they release oxygen. That’s why we need them so much.

Sanger's avatar

12H2O + 6CO2 (+light and chlorophyl) -> C6H12O6 + 6O2 + 6H2O.

So, no. They make glucose as their sugar and oxygen as a waste product. But we need oxygen and we exhale carbon dioxide. So we help each other.

LuckyGuy's avatar

No. Plants absorb CO2 and release O2 as @Sanger detailed above.

BUT, when plants and wood are burned they release virtually the same amount of CO2 they absorbed during their life.

LostInParadise's avatar

When plants use photosynthesis, they absorb carbon dioxide. When they use respiration, they release it. You get the formula for respiration by reversing the arrow in @Sanger‘s equation and replace light with energy.

Lightlyseared's avatar

To add to what @LostInParadise wrote plants only use more CO2 than they release when they are actively growing. A mature plant/tree is almost perfectly carbon neutral.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Yes, but it is a good idea to understand that when you stare at all those living trees and plants, you are looking at sequestered carbon and we could stand to snatch a lot more of it from our air and oceans.

Caravanfan's avatar

Yes, they release CO2 in a process called cellular respiration.

Lightlyseared's avatar

@stanleybmanly true but then you should chop those trees down, turn them into something useful that your won’t burn (like books) and plant new trees so they can take more CO2 out of the atmosphere.

Or alternatively stop polluting the ocean and killing all the phytoplankton that are doing all the actual heavy lifting in turning co2 into oxygen.

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