Roles of Respiration, Combustion and Photosynthesis

Roles of Respiration, Combustion and Photosynthesis

Role of Respiration

  • Respiration is a process that all living organisms undergo, converting organic material into energy, carbon dioxide, and water.
  • Respiration affects the composition of the atmosphere because it releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
  • It is a major process that influences levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide – a greenhouse gas.

Role of Combustion

  • Combustion refers to the burning of substances, which is essentially a process of rapid oxidation accompanied by the release of energy.
  • It is primarily the combustion of fossil fuels that contributes to the high concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
  • The burning of coal, gas and oil in industrial processes, power stations and home heating systems, as well as the burning of wood and waste materials, releases large amounts of CO2 into the air.

Role of Photosynthesis

  • Photosynthesis is the process by which green plants, algae, and some bacteria absorb light energy (usually from the sun) to convert water and carbon dioxide into glucose (a sugar) and oxygen.
  • It is an essential process that reduces the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and produces oxygen.
  • Photosynthesis works in opposition to respiration and combustion. While respiration and combustion add carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, photosynthesis removes it. This balance between the processes helps regulate the levels of carbon dioxide and oxygen in the atmosphere.