Greater Levels of Pollution Increase Algal Photosynthesis Rate

Abigail Wright, Carson Trent, Jessica Trammell, Meelyn Pandit


Eutrophication is caused by the excess of nitrogen and phosphorous, and it causes the death of plant and animal life by bacterial consumption of oxygen in aquatic environments (French 2016). These environments need the production of more oxygen via photosynthesis to combat the effects of eutrophication. This is why less polluted and more polluted water samples were tested under different frequencies of light to determine their respective photosynthesis rates in hopes of finding the best environment for enhancing production of oxygen via photosynthesis. The water samples were left under high frequency blue light and then under low frequency red light, and their absorbance spectrum was measured with a spectrometer each week. From the absorbance spectrum results, we calculated the total chlorophyll content of each sample to determine the photosynthetic rate. Our results suggest that more polluted under lower frequencies of light expressed greater rate of algal photosynthesis than the less polluted water.

Full Text:



  • There are currently no refbacks.