Strains of cyanobacteria that produce high levels of alpha ketoglutarate (AKG) and pyruvate are disclosed herein. Methods of culturing these cyanobacteria to produce AKG or pyruvate and recover AKG or pyruvate from the culture are also described herein. Nucleic acid sequences encoding polypeptides that function as ethylene-forming enzymes and their use in the production of ethylene are further disclosed herein. These nucleic acids may be expressed in hosts such as cyanobacteria, which in turn may be cultured to produce ethylene.
 The United States Government has rights in this invention under Contract No. DE-AC36-08G028308 between the United States Department of Energy and the Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC, the Manager and Operator of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.