Our Photosynthesis Hero

By: Veronica Flores Period 4

Our Photosynthesis Hero

When I was young my grandpa used to talk about how people would stop caring about the green plants that stick out of the ground. He had said that most people took the oxygen in the air for granted, that they didn’t realize what horrible consequences awaited them after chopping down every last tree or plant. He had said he didn’t want to be alive when it happened. Later that year, he died from a terrible type of lung cancer. That should have been the sign that things were going down. Back then it was so easy to breathe, but breathing is difficult to do. Most people just stay inside all day. I guess Grandpa was right.

It was a beautiful day in March of 2020; everything was perfect, except for the air. It was getting more and more difficult to breathe; it was like every breath was choking you. The only place where it was easy to breathe was Pire Grove. There were two gigantic trees that were green and brown in the summer and orange in the fall that offered shade and best of all, fresh air. On that day I decided to stop by Pire Grove and I gasped when I saw what was happening. The mayor was going to chop down the trees to build a house! They didn’t realize that the plants were our only hope for humanity. I had to do something.

Later that week there was a city council meeting that would let anyone speak out on issues. I had done a lot of research the past couple of days about plants, trees, and something called photosynthesis. As I was waiting for the part of the meeting when it was my time to save the trees, I realized that nobody knew what would happen if they took out the trees. The sun gave radiant energy to a plant and the plant received it along with water and carbon dioxide which we, the humans, exhale. These are reactants, which are things that react to start a reaction. The reactants undergo a chemical change to make glucose and oxygen; these are called products which are what is produced, or made, during photosynthesis. “Now if anyone would like to add something before we close the meeting, right now is the time.” I hesitantly stepped forward.

With my hands shaking I began my speech. Everything was going well and I was almost done when the most important part of my speech was coming up. “So, when you add CO2 (Carbon Dioxide), H2O (Water), and light from the sun, photosynthesis occurs in the chloroplast and makes C6H12O6 (Glucose) and O2 (Oxygen).” I took a slight pause and continued. “Have you ever wondered why it’s so hard to breathe? Plants are at the beginning of the food chain because all animals and humans get their air as well as food from plants. If you chop down those trees you will die eventually from no new oxygen being produced because there will be no plants making the oxygen.” I concluded with relief and pride and patiently waited for the mayor to say something. The mayor looked at me with a frown and left the room without a word. Was that a yes or no?

Two years later you could go outside and breathe easily and comfortably. In those two years there were plants and flowers everywhere, we had even begun to plant trees. The whole community helps out every week and we take turns gardening. People still come up to me and ask where our air comes from. I usually point to the sun and start the story all over again, “It starts with radiant energy from the sun…..”