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Ozone critical levels for (semi-)natural vegetation dominated by perennial grassland species

New critical levels for ozone based on accumulated flux through stomata (phytotoxic ozone dose, POD), for temperate perennialgrassland (semi-)natural vegetation, have been agreed for use within the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. These were based on data from several experiments conducted under naturally fluctuating environmental conditions that were combined and analysed to give linear dose-response relationships. Dose-response functions and flux-based critical levels were derived based on biomass and flower number. These parameters showed a statistically significant decline with increasing accumulated stomatal ozone flux. The functions and critical levels derived are based on sensitive species and can be used for risk assessments of the damaging effect of ozone on temperate vegetation communities dominated by perennial grassland species. The critical level based on flower number was lower than that for biomass, representing the greater sensitivity of flower number to ozone pollution.

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