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Atmosphere–cryosphere interactions during the last phase of the Last Glacial Maximum (21 ka) in the European Alps
Costanza Del Gobbo, Renato R. Colucci, Giovanni Monegato, Manja Žebre, Filippo Giorgi, 2023, original scientific article

Abstract: Evidence that during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) glaciers extended well into the piedmont plains is still identifiable in the alpine foreland as a system of well-preserved moraines. Glaciers are strongly controlled by temperature and precipitation, and therefore, they are excellent indicators of climate change. Here, we use a regional climate model (RCM) to investigate some of the physical processes sustaining Alpine glaciers during the last phase of the LGM during Greenland Stadial 2 at 21 ka. We find a predominance of convection during summer and increased southwesterly stratiform precipitation over the southern Alps when compared to pre-industrial (PI) conditions. This precipitation pattern, along with lower temperatures, determined summer snowfall extending to low elevations, with a consequent substantial drop of the equilibrium line altitude (ELA), which is consistent with the estimated LGM glacier extent. Our RCM-based estimates of 21 ka ELA at the LGM yield excellent consistency with Alpine ELA reconstructions, further demonstrating the great potential of this technique for use in palaeoclimate studies.
Keywords: Quaternary, ice age, atmosphere, glaciers, climate change, the Alps
Published in DiRROS: 19.09.2023; Views: 68; Downloads: 28
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The potential global distribution of an emerging forest pathogen, Lecanosticta acicola, under a changing climate
Nikica Ogris, Rein Drenkhan, Petr Vahalík, Thomas L. Cech, Martin Mullett, Katherine Tubby, 2023, original scientific article

Abstract: Brown spot needle blight (BSNB), caused by Lecanosticta acicola (Thüm.) Syd., is an emerging forest disease of Pinus species originating from North America and introduced to Europe and Asia. Severity and spread of the disease has increased in the last two decades in North America and Europe as a response to climate change. No modeling work on spread, severity, climatic suitability, or potential distribution has been done for this important emerging pathogen. This study utilizes a global dataset of 2,970 independent observations of L. acicola presence and absence from the geodatabase, together with Pinus spp. distribution data and 44 independent climatic and environmental variables. The objectives were to (1) identify which bioclimatic and environmental variables are most influential in the distribution of L. acicola; (2) compare four modeling approaches to determine which modeling method best fits the data; (3) examine the realized distribution of the pathogen under climatic conditions in the reference period (1971–2000); and (4) predict the potential future global distribution of the pathogen under various climate change scenarios. These objectives were achieved using a species distribution modeling. Four modeling approaches were tested: regression-based model, individual classification trees, bagging with three different base learners, and random forest. Altogether, eight models were developed. An ensemble of the three best models was used to make predictions for the potential distribution of L. acicola: bagging with random tree, bagging with logistic model trees, and random forest. Performance of the model ensemble was very good, with high precision (0.87) and very high AUC (0.94). The potential distribution of L. acicola was computed for five global climate models (GCM) and three combined pathways of Shared Socioeconomic Pathway (SSP) and Representative Concentration Pathway (SSP-RCP): SSP1-RCP2.6, SSP2-RCP4.5, and SSP5-RCP8.5. The results of the five GCMs were averaged on combined SSP-RCP (median) per 30-year period. Eight of 44 studied factors determined as most important in explaining L. acicola distribution were included in the models: mean diurnal temperature range, mean temperature of wettest quarter, precipitation of warmest quarter, precipitation seasonality, moisture in upper portion of soil column of wettest quarter, surface downwelling longwave radiation of driest quarter, surface downwelling shortwave radiation of warmest quarter and elevation. The actual distribution of L. acicola in the reference period 1971–2000 covered 5.9% of Pinus spp. area globally. However, the model ensemble predicted potential distribution of L. acicola to cover an average of 58.2% of Pinus species global cover in the reference period. Different climate change scenarios (five GCMs, three SSP-RCPs) showed a positive trend in possible range expansion of L. acicola for the period 1971–2100. The average model predictions toward the end of the century showed the potential distribution of L. acicola rising to 62.2, 61.9, 60.3% of Pinus spp. area for SSP1-RCP2.6, SSP2-RCP4.5, SSP5-RCP8.5, respectively. However, the 95% confidence interval encompassed 35.7–82.3% of global Pinus spp. area in the period 1971–2000 and 33.6–85.8% in the period 2071–2100. It was found that SSP-RCPs had a little effect on variability of BSNB potential distribution (60.3–62.2% in the period 2071–2100 for medium prediction). In contrast, GCMs had vast impact on the potential distribution of L. acicola (33.6–85.8% of global pines area). The maps of potential distribution of BSNB will assist forest managers in considering the risk of BSNB. The results will allow practitioners and policymakers to focus surveillance methods and implement appropriate management plans.
Keywords: brown spot needle blight, BSNB, pines, species distribution model, climate change, biosecurity
Published in DiRROS: 02.08.2023; Views: 110; Downloads: 55
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Radial increment of beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) Is under a strong impact of climate in the continental biogeographical region of Croatia
Tom Levanič, Damir Ugarković, Ivan Seletković, Mladen Ognjenović, Mia Marušić, Robert Bogdanić, Nenad Potočić, 2023, original scientific article

Abstract: European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) is an important component of forests in the alpine and continental biogeographical regions of Croatia. This study aimed to (1) analyze the long-term response of beech to climate, (2) identify potentially critical climatic conditions that could negatively affect the radial increment (RI) and vitality of beech, and (3) evaluate differences in the response of beech between the two biogeographical regions in Croatia. We used the 16 × 16 km Croatian ICP Forests Level 1 network. On a total of 25 plots, we cored between 5 and 24 trees for dendrochronological analysis. Tree-ring widths (TRW) were measured and standardized using cubic spline. TRW chronologies for the two regions were calculated and correlated to the temperature and precipitation data and Standardized Precipitation and Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI) using bootstrapped correlations. Continental region precipitation from April to August and alpine region precipitation from June to August were significantly important for RI. Temperature was less important for RI than precipitation in both regions, but the importance of the negative impact of above-average temperatures in the continental region and the positive impact of above-average precipitation in the alpine region has increased over the last two decades. A comparison with the 3-month SPEI confirmed the significant influence of high temperatures and the lack of precipitation in August on the RI of beech trees in both regions.
Keywords: climate change, tree growth, forest productivity, drought, European beech
Published in DiRROS: 28.06.2023; Views: 165; Downloads: 50
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Growth response of European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) and Silver Fir (Abies alba Mill.) to climate factors along the Carpathian massive
Pia Caroline Adamič, Tom Levanič, Mihail Hanzu, Matjaž Čater, 2023, original scientific article

Abstract: European forests are becoming increasingly threatened by climate change and more frequent droughts. The likely responses of species to climate change will vary, affecting their competitiveness, their existence, and consequently, forest management decisions and measures. We determined the influence of climate on the radial growth of European beech and silver fir along the Carpathians to find similarities between the two species and the main differences. Along the Carpathian Mountains, seven sites with mature fir–beech stands above 800 m above sea level were selected and analyzed. Our study confirmed different responses depending on species and location. A more pronounced response of tree growth to climate was observed on the eastern side of the Carpathians, while it was less expressed or even absent on the southern sites. Both beech and fir show better radial growth with higher precipitation in July and slower growth with higher average and maximum temperatures in June of the current year. Fir demonstrates a positive correlation between radial growth and temperature in winter, while beech demonstrates a negative correlation between radial growth and temperature in summer. In the 1951–1960 decade, the average tree ring widths in fir and beech were largest at the southern sites compared to the other sites, but since 2011, the southern sites have had the lowest increase while northern sites have had the largest. Both species respond differently to climate and are likely to follow different competitive paths in the future.
Keywords: climate change, dendrochronology, radial growth response, meteorological parameters
Published in DiRROS: 28.06.2023; Views: 162; Downloads: 85
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Prediction of actual from climatic precipitation with data collected from northern Poland : a statistical approach
Jacek Barańczuk, Martina Zeleňáková, Hany F. Abd-Elhamid, Katarzyna Barańczuk, Salem S. Gharbia, Peter Blišťan, Cécil J. W. Meulenberg, Peter Kumer, Włodzimierz Golus, Maciej Markowski, 2023, original scientific article

Abstract: Water is a basic element of the natural environment and the most important component in human water management. Rainfall is the main source of water. Therefore, determining the amount of precipitation reaching the ground using sensors is crucial information. Precise precipitation data are necessary for better modeling quality, as the observation data from weather stations are used as basics for weather model assessment. The authors compared precipitation from the Hellmann rain gauge (climatic precipitation, 1.0 m above the ground surface) measured throughout the year and the GGI 3000 rain gauge (actual precipitation on the ground level) measured from April to October. Measurement sequences from the years 2011–2020 were considered. The data for analysis were obtained from a weather station located in northern Poland. The authors analyzed the relationships between data from the two sensors. A comparative study showed that the measurements of actual precipitation are higher and there are strong relationships between actual and climatic rainfall (r = 0.99). Using the introduced coefficient it is possible to determine the full–year actual precipitation with high probability, taking into account the precipitation with a correction from the winter half-year and the actual precipitation from the summer half-year, which is of great importance in the calculation of the water balance.
Keywords: natural environment, climate change, precipitation, prediction, statistics, analysis, Poland
Published in DiRROS: 25.01.2023; Views: 212; Downloads: 117
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Understanding interdisciplinarity through Adriatic maricultures and climate change adaptation : Elektronski vir
Cécil J. W. Meulenberg, Shé Mackenzie Hawke, Irina Moira Cavaion, Peter Kumer, Blaž Lenarčič, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: The consequences of accelerating climate change for land and sea biodiversity require innovative approaches to research. Interdisciplinary re-search serves to connect natural science, socialsciences and humanities, tech-nology, and engineering, as well as welcoming citizen scientists into the re-search environment. Interdisciplinarity is part of a developing innovative ap-proach to research that emphasizes co-evolution of traditional sciences, with citizen science and participatory engagement in the realisation of research goals and the promotion of climate change mitigation strategies. In this article, through the example of shellfish maricultures we illustrate interdisciplinarity, particularlydemonstrating how marine biology, health and well-being, social science and cultural geography come together at the interface between nature, culture, and climate change mitigation strategies.
Keywords: interdisciplinarity, maricultures, eco-linguistics, climate change, citizen science, ecosystem services
Published in DiRROS: 28.09.2022; Views: 341; Downloads: 152
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Turkey oak (Quercus cerris L.) is more drought tolerant and better reflects climate variations compared to pedunculate oak (Quercus robur L.) in lowland mixed forests in northwestern Serbia : ǂa ǂstable carbon isotope ratio (δ13C) and radial growth approach
Saša Kostić, Tom Levanič, Saša Orlović, Bratislav Matović, Dejan Stojanović, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: Tree-ring width (TRW), stable carbon isotope ratio (δ13C) and intrinsic water use efficiency (iWUE) data set chronologies were built for the period 1961–2000 for two oak species (pedunculate oak – Quercus robur L. and Turkey oak – Quercus cerris L.) in northwestern Serbia (Vojvodina province). We focused on the response of the two oak species to measured meteorological data (temperature, precipitation and cloud cover), drought events expressed by six meteorological drought indices, and river water level to better understand their drought tolerance and stress and to assess the reliability of the species response to climate and drought indices when using TRW or δ13C. Turkey oak exhibited better drought tolerance (and less drought stress) compared to pedunculate oak, as manifested, respectively, by less negative δ13C and lower iWUE values. Based on a generalised additive mixed model (GAMM) among the six drought indices studied, the standardised precipitation evapotranspiration index and the standardised precipitation index showed the best fit with both TRW and δ13C, while the Palmer drought severity index exerted a strong influence only on TRW. It was thus concluded that δ13C responds more strongly and rapidly to climate variations than TRW.
Keywords: dendrochronology, stable carbon isotope, tree ring, Quercus robur, Quercus cerris, drought, climate change
Published in DiRROS: 04.08.2022; Views: 409; Downloads: 257
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A methodological proposal for the climate change risk assessment of coastal habitats based on the evaluation of ecosystem services : lessons learnt from the INTERREG project ECO-SMART
Alberto Barausse, Cécil J. W. Meulenberg, Irene Occhipinti, Marco Abordi, Lara Endrizzi, Giovanna Guadagnin, Mirco Piron, Francesca Visintin, Liliana Vižintin, Alessandro Manzardo, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: Climate change is seriously impacting coastal biodiversity and the benefits it provides to humans. This issue is particularly relevant in the case of the European Union’s Natura 2000 network of areas for nature protection, where the sensitivity of local ecosystems calls for intervention to increase resistance and resilience to climate-related risks. Given the complex ways in which climate can influence conservation hotspot areas, there is a need to develop effective strategic approaches and general operational models to identify priorities for management and inform adaptation and mitigation measures. Here, a novel methodological proposal to perform climate risk assessment in Natura 2000 sites is presented that implements the systematic approach of ISO 14090 in combination with the theoretical framework of ecosystem services assessment and local stakeholder participation to identify climate-related issues for local protected habitats and improve the knowledge base needed to plan sustainable conservation and restoration measures. The methodology was applied to five Natura 2000 sites located along the Adriatic coast of Italy and Slovenia. Results show that each of the assessed sites, despite being along the coast of the same sea, is affected by different climate-related issues, impacting different habitats and corresponding ecosystem services. This novel methodology enables a simple and rapid screening for the prioritization of conservation actions and of the possible further investigations needed to support decision making, and was found to be robust and of general applicability. These findings highlight the importance of designing site-specific adaptation measures, tailored to address the peculiar response to climate change of each site in terms of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
Keywords: ecosystem, ecosystem services, climate change adaptation, nature conservation, sustainability, coastal management
Published in DiRROS: 01.07.2022; Views: 366; Downloads: 250
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Good survival of broadleaf tree species in a four-year-old plantation in the Slovenian Karst
Nina Škrk, Kristjan Jarni, Robert Brus, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: Six broadleaf tree species (Celtis australis L. – Mediterranean hackberry, Quercus petraea (Matt.) Liebl. – sessile oak, Fagus sylvatica L. – European beech, Prunus avium L. – wild cherry, Juglans regia L. – Persian walnut and Acer pseudoplatanus L. – sycamore maple) were planted in 2012 in a trial in the Slovenian Karst on two sites differing in productivity to test their suitability for use in the conversion of old pine stands into ecologically more stable broadleaf forests and to investigate their possible response to the harsher growth conditions predicted in the future. The selected economically interesting tree species have higher timber quality than broadleaves which regenerate naturally (e.g., Ostrya carpinifolia, Fraxinus ornus, Quercus cerris). Measurements were taken in 2017, after four growth seasons. All planted species except Fagus sylvatica had a high survival rate. In total, 70% of all seedlings survived, which shows promising potential. The survival rate was higher at the site on flat terrain than at the site on a slope. Prunus avium was the most successful of all planted species in terms of survival rate, at 83%, and other measured parameters (height, height increment, stem diameter, vitality and quality), and Fagus sylvatica was the least successful, with a survival rate of only 20%. Celtis australis had the highest survival rate, at 87%. Acer pseudoplatanus had the largest differences in measured parameters between the more and less productive sites among all planted species. Quercus petraea showed high resistance to xeric conditions and is expected to be the most successful in conversions. All planted species except Fagus sylvatica show favourable initial potential for the future conversion of Karst pine forests.
Keywords: forest conversion, broadleaves, survival rate, seedlings quality, climate change
Published in DiRROS: 28.06.2022; Views: 1735; Downloads: 866
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Effects of climate on Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco) growth Southeast of the European Alps
Tom Levanič, Hana Štraus, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco) is a non-native tree species in Slovenia with the potential to partially replace Norway spruce in our native forests. Compared to spruce, it has several advantages in terms of volume growth, wood quality and tolerance to drought. This is important given the changing climate in which spruce is confronted with serious problems caused by increasing temperatures and drought stress. At three sites (one on non-carbonate bedrock and deep soils, and two on limestone with soil layers of varying depths), 20 Douglas-fir and 20 spruce per site were sampled in order to compare their radial growth response to climate and drought events. The radial growth of Douglas-fir exceeds that of spruce by about 20% on comparable sites. It is more responsive to climate than spruce. Above-average temperatures in February and March have a significant positive effect on the radial growth of Douglas-fir. In recent decades, above-average summer precipitation has also had a positive influence on the radial growth of Douglas-fir. Compared to spruce, Douglas-fir is less sensitive to extreme drought events. Our results indicate that Douglas-fir may be a good substitute for spruce in semi-natural managed forest stands in Slovenia. The planting of Douglas-fir should be allowed in Slovenian forests, but the proportion of it in forest stands should be kept lower than is the case with spruce today.
Keywords: climate change, climate response, drought, radial increment, dendrochronology
Published in DiRROS: 15.06.2022; Views: 346; Downloads: 299
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