The majority of the world’s people depend research work should be carried out at the local and regional level by locally trained on plants for their livelihood since they grow them for food, fuel, timber, fodder and people. many other uses. A good understanding Following the success of our earlier book of the practical factors which govern the (Techniques in Bioproductivity and Photo- synthesis; Pergamon Press, 1985), which productivity of plants through the process of photosynthesis is therefore of paramount was translated into four major languages, importance, especially in the light of cur- the editors and contributors have exten- rent concern about global climate change sively revised the content and widened the and the response of both crops and natural scope of the text, – so it now bears a title ecosystems. in line with current concern over global The origins of this book lie in a series of climate change. – In particular, we have training courses sponsored by the United added chapters on remote sensing, con- Nations Environment Programme (Project trolled-environment studies, chlorophyll No. FP/6108-88-0l (2855); ‘Environment fluorescence, metabolite partitioning and changes and the productivity of tropical the use of mass isotopes, all of which grasslands’), with additional support from techniques are increasing in their applica- many international and national agencies. tion and importance to this subject area.