Plants and Solar Energy
When the Sun shines, plant cells take action! They transform solar energy to chemical energy by photosynthesis. During photosynthesis, plant cells absorb sunlight and carbon dioxide from the air. At the same time, plant cells remove oxygen from water and release it into the air. The process produces sugars and starches that are either stored or used as food for the plant.
Fuel for Thought
Animals that lived millions of years ago ate plants, or ate animals that ate plants. Their bodies stored chemical energy from the plants. After the plants and animals died, their chemical energy slowly turned into chemical energy in fossil fuels. Wow! That means solar energy absorbed by plants millions of years ago indirectly fuels our cars and heats our homes today!