Polluted Air: Potent New Selective Force in Forests

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Abstract:

A review of some of the known acute and chronic effects of gaseous air pollutants on forest trees, with particular reference to ozone damage to pines, leads to perception of polluted air as a new selective force in temperate zone forests. This force is amplified by known interactions of air pollutants (as predisposing agents) with tree pests such as bark beetles, and by probable interactions with facultatively parasitic root and stem fungi, with insect defoliators, and with environmental factors such as drought. Heritable inter- and intraspecific variations in susceptibility to injury by polluted air and by specific pollutants are exploitable characteristics of trees, allowing selection of resistant trees and development of pollutant-sensitive trees as perennial bioindicators of air pollution. Experimental studies of the magnitude of air pollutant impacts on growth and reproduction of important tree species, of types of acute and chronic injury caused by various combinations of air pollutants, and of the impact of interactions of air pollutants with other agents are needed.

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Associate Professor, Dept. of Plant Pathology, Cornell University, Ithaca, N. Y.

Publication date: May 1, 1969

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.
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