Effecten van luchtverontreiniging in interactie met klimaatverandering op ecosysteemdiensten (ECLAIRE) (KB-14-001-036, KB-14-003-011)

Project: LNV project

Project Details



A change in the terrestrial carbon sequestration may largely affect the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. The productivity of ecosystems is enhanced by the fertilizing effect of nitrogen (N) deposition and carbon dioxide (CO2) exposure and also by a warmer climate in e.g. the Nordic countries. Inversely, however, in Mediterranean countries, climate change may cause an increased water stress, thus reducing productivity and carbon sequestration.

Furthermore, elevated ozone (O3) exposure may decrease photosynthesis (i.e. plant productivity) and carbon sequestration. The European Commission is therefore concerned about the continuously increasing ozone background concentrations in Europe and questions how atmospheric pollution affects the productivity and plant community structure of European land ecosystems and the related carbon sequestration in biomass and soil in a changing climate. This is complex issue since plant productivity and related carbon sequestration of European terrestrial ecosystems is not only affected by adverse impacts of ozone (O3) exposure but also by the fertilizing effect of nitrogen (N) deposition and carbon dioxide (CO2) exposure, and its interaction with climate change (warming and more intermittent precipitation). Furthermore, the availability of nutrients other than N, such as phosphate and base cations, affects productivity.

Research objectives and expected results

A combined experimental and modelling approach is used to explore the stress of air pollution in a changing climate on vegetation and the impact on biomass including soil organic matter. The research approach and expected results include:

  • Quantitative information on the combined additive, synergistic or antagonistic effects of the various drivers (O3 and CO2exposure, N temperature and precipitation) on plant productivity by meta-analysys of experimental approaches.
  • Further developed and validated dynamic soil vegetation growth models (the model chain VSD+-FORSPACE-PROPS)) on various experimental plots.
  • Scientifically sound thresholds for protecting plant ecosystems from atmospheric pollutants (NOx, NH3 ,O3) for maintaining productivity and the carbon sink strength in view of interactions, based on both the experimental and modelling approaches
  • Quantified effects of future atmospheric concentrations under different climate scenarios on ecosystem productivity (including economic implications) at a European scale, based on the various models.
Effective start/end date1/01/1131/12/15


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