Feedbacks of vegetation change to surface energy balance and seasonal thawing of permafrost

D. Blok

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractAcademic

Abstract

Terrestrial ecosystems affect climate through fluxes of energy, water and greenhouse gases. Changes in community composition and vegetation structure alter these fluxes, thereby potentially altering climate. Such vegetation feedback could contribute considerably to futre regional climate warming in the Arctic. Recent research mainly focused on vegetation-atmosphere interactions using eddy correlation to compare the surface energy balance among arctic ecosystems. However, vegetation-soil interactions which influence thawing depth have been much less studied, while permafrost thawing has the risk of releasing massive amounts of CO2 and CH4 into the atmosphere. We expect that a shift from moss- to shrub-dominated vegetation, which is already widely occurring in tundra ecosystems, will lead to a positive feedback further increasing local warming and permafrost thawing. In this project we will determine the effects of plant functional types, such as mosses, shrubs and grasses, on the surface energy balance and permafrost thawing. This requires a combination of field observations and experiments in order to disentangle vegetation effects from soil/climate effects. The resulting knowledge of the direct effects of vegetation changes will be incorporated in the ecosystem model NUCOM. This is a further step towards a regional vegetation-permafrost-c
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2007
EventIMPETUS 2007 - OSL - APECS - PYRN Training workshop, St. Petersburg, Russia -
Duration: 30 Nov 20072 Dec 2007

Workshop

WorkshopIMPETUS 2007 - OSL - APECS - PYRN Training workshop, St. Petersburg, Russia
Period30/11/072/12/07

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