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1.
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: 146; Downloads: 94
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2.
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: 162; Downloads: 115
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3.
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: 616; Downloads: 290
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4.
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: 144; Downloads: 115
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5.
Repository of drought event impacts across the danube catchment countries between 1981 and 2016 using publicly available sources
Jiří Jakubínský, Monika Bláhová, Lenka Bartošová, Klára Steinerová, Jan Balek, Petra Dížková, Daniela Semerádová, Daniel Alexandru, Galia Bardarska, Sabina Bokal, Gregor Gregorič, Gal Oblišar, Andreja Sušnik, 2019, original scientific article

Abstract: Drought directly and indirectly affects human society in a number of ways. In many regions of the world climate change will exasperate the effects of droughts, affect national economies more intensely. The main aim of this article was to catalogue and analyze the drought impacts in the 11 Central and South Eastern European states located in the Danube river basin. The identification of dry episodes was based on information from publicly available sources, namely, newspaper and journal articles that reported drought impacts. Information on drought impact occurrences was classified into one of five defined categories in which the drought impact report was most clearly manifested (i.e., agriculture, forestry, soil systems, wildfires and hydrology). In terms of the spatial distribution of drought impacts, individual recorded events were analyzed at the level of EU NUTS regions (or their equivalent in non-EU countries). The analysis highlights country-specific vulnerability to drought. Furthermore, gradual increases in drought events and the number of reported impacts were identified, which was particularly evident in the agricultural sector.
Keywords: drought impact, Danube basin, agriculture, climate change, water stress
Published in DiRROS: 21.04.2022; Views: 292; Downloads: 149
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6.
Jet stream position explains regional anomalies in European beech forest productivity and tree growth
Isabel Dorado Liñán, Blanca Ayarzagüena, Flurin Babst, Guobao Xu, Luis Gil, Giovanna Battipaglia, Allan Buras, Vojtěch Čada, Jesús J. Camarero, Liam Cavin, Tom Levanič, Peter Prislan, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: The mechanistic pathways connecting ocean-atmosphere variability and terrestrial productivity are well-established theoretically, but remain challenging to quantify empirically. Such quantification will greatly improve the assessment and prediction of changes in terrestrial carbon sequestration in response to dynamically induced climatic extremes. The jet stream latitude (JSL) over the North Atlantic-European domain provides a synthetic and robust physical framework that integrates climate variability not accounted for by atmospheric circulation patterns alone. Surface climate impacts of north-south summer JSL displacements are not uniform across Europe, but rather create a northwestern-southeastern dipole in forest productivity and radial-growth anomalies. Summer JSL variability over the eastern North Atlantic-European domain (5-40E) exerts the strongest impact on European beech, inducing anomalies of up to 30% in modelled gross primary productivity and 50% in radial tree growth. The net effects of JSL movements on terrestrial carbon fluxes depend on forest density, carbon stocks, and productivity imbalances across biogeographic regions.
Keywords: atmospheric dynamics, climate-change ecology, climate-change impacts, environmental impact
Published in DiRROS: 20.04.2022; Views: 238; Downloads: 249
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7.
Impact of climate change on landslides in Slovenia in the mid-21st century
Mateja Jemec Auflič, Gašper Bokal, Špela Kumelj, Anže Medved, Mojca Dolinar, Jernej Jež, 2021, original scientific article

Abstract: Slovenia is affected by extreme and intense rainfall that triggers numerous landslides every year, resulting in significant human impact and damage to infrastructure. Previous studies on landslides have shown how rainfall patterns can influence landslide occurrence, while in this paper, we present one of the first study in Slovenia to examine the impact of climate change on landslides in the mid-21st century. To do this, we used the Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 4.5 climate scenario and future climatology simulated by six climate models that differed from each other as much as possible while representing measured values of past climate variables as closely as possible. Based on baseline period (1981-2010) we showed the number of days with exceedance of rainfall thresholds and the area where landslides may occur more frequently in the projection period (2041-2070). We found that extreme rainfall events are likely to occur more frequent in the future, which may lead to a higher frequency of landslides in some areas.
Keywords: climate change, landslides, models, hazard, prediction
Published in DiRROS: 09.03.2022; Views: 275; Downloads: 111
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8.
Growing stock monitoring by European National Forest Inventories : historical origins, current methods and harmonisation
Thomas Gschwantner, Iciar Alberdi, Sébastien Bauwens, Susann Bender, Dragan Borota, Michal Bošela, Olivier Bouriaud, Johannes Breidenbach, Janis Donis, Christoph Fischer, Mitja Skudnik, 2022, original scientific article

Abstract: Wood resources have been essential for human welfare throughout history. Also nowadays, the volume of growing stock (GS) is considered one of the most important forest attributes monitored by National Forest Inventories (NFIs) to inform policy decisions and forest management planning. The origins of forest inventories closely relate to times of early wood shortage in Europe causing the need to explore and plan the utilisation of GS in the catchment areas of mines, saltworks and settlements. Over time, forest surveys became more detailed and their scope turned to larger areas, although they were still conceived as stand-wise inventories. In the 1920s, the first sample-based NFIs were introduced in the northern European countries. Since the earliest beginnings, GS monitoring approaches have considerably evolved. Current NFI methods differ due to country-specific conditions, inventory traditions, and information needs. Consequently, GS estimates were lacking international comparability and were therefore subject to recent harmonisation efforts to meet the increasing demand for consistent forest resource information at European level. As primary large-area monitoring programmes in most European countries, NFIs assess a multitude of variables, describing various aspects of sustainable forest management, including for example wood supply, carbon sequestration, and biodiversity. Many of these contemporary subject matters involve considerations about GS and its changes, at different geographic levels and time frames from past to future developments according to scenario simulations. Due to its historical, continued and currently increasing importance, we provide an up-to-date review focussing on large-area GS monitoring where we i) describe the origins and historical development of European NFIs, ii) address the terminology and present GS definitions of NFIs, iii) summarise the current methods of 23 European NFIs including sampling methods, tree measurements, volume models, estimators, uncertainty components, and the use of air- and space-borne data sources, iv) present the recent progress in NFI harmonisation in Europe, and v) provide an outlook under changing climate and forest-based bioeconomy objectives.
Keywords: forest history, natural resources, sustainability, timber volume, sampling, remote sensing, bioeconomy, climate change
Published in DiRROS: 14.12.2021; Views: 334; Downloads: 186
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9.
Contrasting resource dynamics in mast years for European Beech and Oak - a continental scale analysis
Anita Nussbaumer, Arthur Gessler, Sue Benham, B. De Cinti, Sophia Etzold, Morten Ingerslev, Frank Jacob, François Lebourgeois, Tom Levanič, Hrvoje Marjanović, 2021, original scientific article

Abstract: Resource allocation to different plant tissues is likely to be affected by high investment into fruit production during mast years. However, there is a large knowledge gap concerning species-specific differences in resource dynamics. We investigated the influence of mast years on stem growth, leaf production, and leaf carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) concentrations and contents in Fagus sylvatica, Quercus petraea, and Q. robur at continental and climate region scales using long-term data from the International Co-operative Programme on Assessment and Monitoring of Air Pollution Effects on Forests (ICP Forests) and similar datasets. We discussed the results in the light of opposing resource dynamics hypotheses: (i) resource accumulation before mast years and exhaustion after mast years (resource storage hypothesis), (ii) shifting resources from vegetative to generative compartments (resource switching hypothesis), and (iii) investing resources concurrently in both vegetative and generative compartments (resource matching hypothesis). Linear mixed-effects modelling (LMM) showed that both stem growth and leaf production were negatively influenced by weather conditions which simultaneously lead to high fruit production. Thus, the impact of generative on vegetative growth is intermixed with effects of environmental factors. Superposed epoch analyses and LMM showed that for mast behaviour in F. sylvatica, there are indicators supporting the resource storage and the resource switching hypotheses. Before mast years, resources were accumulated, while during mast years resources switched from vegetative to generative tissues with reduced stem and leaf growth. For the Quercus species, stem growth was reduced after mast years, which supports the resource storage hypothesis. LMM showed that leaf C concentrations did not change with increasing fruit production in neither species. Leaf N and P concentrations increased in F. sylvatica, but not in Quercus species. Leaf N and P contents decreased with increasing fruit production in all species, as did leaf C content in F. sylvatica. Overall, our findings suggest different resource dynamics strategies in F. sylvatica and Quercus species, which might lead to differences in their adaptive capacity to a changing climate.
Keywords: climate change, Fagus sylvatica, long-term monitoring, mast fruiting, Quercus petraea, Quercus robur, resource dynamics
Published in DiRROS: 15.07.2021; Views: 477; Downloads: 357
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10.
Surprising drought tolerance of Fir (Abies) species between past climatic adaptation and future projections reveals new chances for adaptive forest management
Csaba Mátyás, František Beran, Jaroslav Dostál, Jiří Čáp, Martin Fulín, Monika Vejpustková, Gregor Božič, Pál Balázs, Josef Frýdl, 2021, original scientific article

Abstract: esearch Highlights: Data of advanced-age provenance tests were reanalyzed applying a new approach, to directly estimate the growth of populations at their original sites under individually generated future climates. The results revealed the high resilience potential of fir species. Background and Objectives: The growth and survival of silver fir under future climatic scenarios are insufficiently investigated at the xeric limits. The selective signature of past climate determining the current and projected growth was investigated to analyze the prospects of adaptive silviculture and assisted transfer of silver fir populations, and the introduction of non-autochthonous species. Materials and Methods: Hargreaves% climatic moisture deficit was selected to model height responses of adult populations. Climatic transfer distance was used to assess the relative drought stress of populations at the test site, relating these to the past conditions to which the populations had adapted. ClimateEU and ClimateWNA pathway RCP8.5 data served to determine individually past, current, and future moisture deficit conditions. Besides silver fir, other fir species from South Europe and the American Northwest were also tested. Results: Drought tolerance profiles explained the responses of transferred provenances and predicted their future performance and survival. Silver fir displayed significant within-species differentiation regarding drought stress response. Applying the assumed drought tolerance limit of 100 mm relative moisture deficit, most of the tested silver fir populations seem to survive their projected climate at their origin until the end of the century. Survival is likely also for transferred Balkan fir species and for grand fir populations, but not for the Mediterranean species. Conclusions: The projections are less dramatic than provided by usual inventory assessments, considering also the resilience of populations. The method fills the existing gap between experimentally determined adaptive response and the predictions needed for management decisions. It also underscores the unique potential of provenance tests.
Keywords: climate change, common garden, provenance test, silver fir, grand fir, Balkan firs, drought stress, resilience, climate transfer distance, adaptation
Published in DiRROS: 05.07.2021; Views: 514; Downloads: 246
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