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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Response of Plants to Interacting Stresses (ROPIS): Program Rationale, Design, and Implications


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 23 No. 3, p. 407-411
    Received: Dec 1, 1992

    * Corresponding author(s): rogoldst@eprinet.epri.com
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  1. Robert Goldstein * and
  2. Scott Ferson
  1. Electric Power Res. Inst., P.O. Box 10412, Palo Alto, CA 94303;
    Applied Biomathematics, 100 North Country Road, Setauket, NY 11733.



The Response of Plants to Interacting Stresses (ROPIS) program was designed to provide a mechanistic framework for analysis and prediction of the effects of air pollution (i.e., tropospheric ozone, acidic precipitation) and other environmental stresses on plants. Focusing on regionally important tree species, the program used experimental studies in the field and laboratory in combination with modeling efforts to evaluate how stresses affect material flow and transformation within the plant and material flow across the plant's boundaries with the soil and the atmosphere. Based on the wealth of results from the program, the stresses directly or indirectly altered flows and transformations that control a plant's carbon, nutrient, and water balances; in turn, these stress-induced effects altered material uptake, biomass production, partitioning of dry matter at the whole-plant level, and the plant's ability to compete for limited resources in the environment. It is proposed that process-level models of material flow within a plant and between a plant and the surrounding environment can be used to integrate and predict plant response to interacting stresses of natural and anthropogenic origin.

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