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The Science Behind the Respiration of Leaves


We often hear that trees and rainforests and plant life are the things that make our planet breathe- taking in Carbon Dioxide and releasing Oxygen. It happens at the smallest level on leaves- but have you ever wondered exactly what’s happening in each of these leaves? Have you ever considered the long-buried leaves from millennia ago- ancient forests which are now mined as other products like rubber, coal and oil?

A young biologist from the Conservancy of Southwest Florida did and his treatise on the importance of leaves and photosynthesis is making the rounds in Conservation circles.

Today on Gulf Coast Live, We’ll talk with Naples-based biologist, Leif Johnson about his ode to leaves and learn the science behind their respiration and decomposition.

Matthew Smith is a reporter and producer of WGCU’s Gulf Coast Live.