The Consequences of Stratospheric Ozone Depletion: an Integration of Cell-to-Ecosystem Responses to Enhanced Solar UV-B Radiation
Since the early 1970s, global concern about possible damage to the stratospheric ozone layer and resultant increase in damaging solar UV-B radiation (sun burning radiation) at the Earth's surface has stimulated considerable research on potential consequences for organisms. After nearly 30 years of research on this global environmental problem, it is time for a conference that reviews our knowledge of this problem and how the effects of enhanced solar UV-B radiation can be integrated from the molecular scale to that of ecosystems. Integration of various biological levels is the principal purpose of the conference. The objectives of this conference are to: (1) assemble a community of scholars to discuss the current state of knowledge on this global problem, (2) synthesize the research through in-depth discussion and analysis, (3) link, scale, and
integrate our knowledge of the effects of enhanced UV-B radiation into a unified model from the molecular to ecosystem scales, and (4) identify critical issues for UV-B research over the coming decade in natural and agricultural systems. Because of the potential for significant consequences of enhanced solar UV-B radiation on major crop plants in agricultural, our integrative approach in the conference will directly benefit agricultural systems. Increased understanding of basic responses mechanisms and how individual plant responses relate to natural and agricultural systems is essential in predicting and responding to a potential future of potentially damaging enhanced solar UV-B radiation.