Plants are all around us, benefiting us in many tangible and non-tangible ways. Photosynthesis occurs in any ecosystem with plants. Where present, plant species composition forms the foundation for all animal life. Photosynthesis is the process by which plants grow and thrive, passing on their energy to animals and humans.
Photosynthesis is an essential process carried out in all chlorophyll-containing plants, algae and cyanobacteria, where a plant uses sunlight, water and carbon dioxide to produce food.
The process provides a means for gas exchange with the atmosphere; plants take in carbon dioxide for photosynthesis and release oxygen as one of the products into the air.
Photosynthesis consists of two reactions: the light reaction that produces energy and the dark reaction that converts carbon dioxide into sugar.
Because of the oxygen released by plants during photosynthesis, life on Earth is possible for humans and all inhabitants of the planet.
Through plant adaptations such as waxy coatings and thickened leaves of plants in arid conditions, a plant is able to carry out photosynthesis even when the environment causes stress for the plant or water supplies run low.
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