Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Holm oaks will gain ground in northern forests due to climate change

09.11.2011
Holm oaks and other forests in lowland areas of Mediterranean mountains could expand by up to 350% due to global warming.

In contrast, those forest formations that are more adapted to cold and humid conditions, such as beech and Sylvester pines, could shrink by up to 99%. Both scenarios could be quite possible in the 21st century according to a model created to study the effects of climate change on the forests of the Sistema Central and the Sistema Ibérico (Spain).

A team led from the Complutense University of Madrid has estimated the possible changes that could be seen in the distribution of 15 of the Iberian Peninsula´s tree species due to climate change from 2041-2070 and 2071-2100. According to what was published in the Journal of Biogeography they used two of the CO2 emissions models of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) when making their estimations.

The main researcher of the study, Diego Ruiz-Labourdette, tells SINC that "the results predict an increase in arid conditions across low mountain areas in the coming decades. This will favour the expansion of Mediterranean perennial species like the holm oak, juniper, the Portuguese oak and the Pyrenean oak, which are better adapted to high temperatures and drought."

These plant communities could increase their dominance by up to 350% with CO2 atmosphere concentrations 0.70 mg/g by 2080 according to one of the scenarios generated by the models. The predictions suggest that spring will progressively arrive earlier, autumn will arrive later and there will be increased summer water shortages in the Iberian Peninsula during the 21st century.

As a result, the models reveal that there will be a reduction in the amount of deciduous forests with trees such as beech and birch, which are adapted to humidity. Eurosiberian conifers (Sylvester pine, high mountain juniper), native to Central and Northern Europe, will also see their distribution area progressively reduced. On the whole, those species adapted to cold and humid conditions could fall by between 80% and 99%.

Researchers outline that the results of the study would have "a significant impact on biodiversity conversation." They propose to prioritise the protection of the eastern massifs of the Sistema Central and its connection with the Sistema Ibérico in order to preserve those tree species found there that are adapted to cold and humid climates. In this way, the mobility of the species through their historic migration paths would be encouraged.

"The study also reveals that in the mountains of the south of Europe the plant formations that will suffer most in terms of distribution will be those found in foothills and low mountain areas. This is due to the increase in water shortages during the season that is good for growth," says another of the co-authors of the study, David Nogués-Bravo, researcher at the University of Copenhagen (Denmark).

This prediction differs from that of the mountain ranges of the temperate regions of Northern Europe. There, the high mountain vegetation will be more affected by climate change, not the vegetation of the lowland areas.

References:

Diego Ruiz-Labourdette, David Nogués-Bravo, Helios Saínz Ollero, María F. Schmitz, Francisco D. Pineda. "Forest composition in Mediterranean mountains is projected to shift along the entire elevational gradient under climate change". Journal of Biogeography, September 2011 (on line). Doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2699.2011.02592.x

SINC | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.fecyt.es

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study
30.03.2017 | Rochester Institute of Technology

nachricht Pan-European study on “Smart Engineering”
30.03.2017 | IPH - Institut für Integrierte Produktion Hannover gGmbH

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A Challenging European Research Project to Develop New Tiny Microscopes

The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.

To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA laser communications to provide Orion faster connections

30.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study

30.03.2017 | Studies and Analyses

Unique genome architectures after fertilisation in single-cell embryos

30.03.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>