Refine Criteria & Thresholds for Mediterranean Forest Protection Against Ozone
The main objective of the FO3REST project was to propose new protection thresholds for Mediterranean forests, more adapted and appropriate, against the impacts of ozone (O3) and climate change. The ground-level ozone can induce visible leaf injuries, decrease chlorophyll content in leaves, accelerate leaf deterioration, decrease photosynthesis, alter the allocation of carbon, decrease fitness, and produce a variety of other physiological effects in plants. This reduced growth lead to reductions in economic profit for forest owners and a reduced CO2 uptake. AOT40, a threshold based on atmospheric O3 accumulation is not as good an indicator as stomatal flow, a measure of ozone actually entering the foliage. Based on experiments on forest plots in the South of France and the Piedmont region of Italy the relationship between absorbed ozone and visible impacts to plants were studies to refine and propose new indicators of plant risks due to ozone.