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  Section: Introduction to Botany » Respiration and Fermentation
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Respiration and Photosynthesis

Respiration and Fermentation
  The ATP Molecule
  Respiration and Photosynthesis
  The Anaerobic and Aerobic Pathways
  The Carbon Cycle

Note that the equation for respiration shown in figure 10-1 is the reverse of that for photosynthesis. Whereas photosynthesis takes carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere, respiration restores carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. These two processes, then, exist in precise balance. In other words, all the world’s photosynthesis is in balance with all the world’s respiration, decay (which is also respiration), and burning of fuels. By these opposing processes, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is maintained at a nearly constant .03%. Carbon, then, is taken out of the atmosphere in one process and returned to it in another. Approximately sixteen billion tons of carbon are processed in this way every year. The cycle can be graphically represented as shown in figure 10-6.

Respiration and photosynthesis are opposite types of reactions, and carbon dioxide and oxygen go through cycles.
Figure 10-5 Respiration and photosynthesis are opposite types of reactions, and carbon dioxide and oxygen go through cycles.
A more detailed version of figure 10-5
Figure 10-6 A more detailed version of figure 10-5


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