Soot, like particles in general, may affect vegetation by both physical and chemical processes. Physically, pa rticles may cover the leaf surface and reduce the amount of light available for photosynthesis, or may occlude stomata. Occlusion may lead to increased resistance to gas exchange, or may prevent full stomatal closure, leading to water stress. Increased transpiration is a common response to particle exposure. Infestation by pests and pathogens is likely to be enhanced.