Ozone biomonitoring in rural stations of Catalonia (NE Spain).

Ribas A, Peñuelas J (2004) Ozone biomonitoring in rural stations of Catalonia (NE Spain). In Klumpp A, Ansel W, Klumpp G (eds) Urban air pollution, bioindication and environmental awareness. Cuviller Verlag, Göttingen, pp. 137-146.

Novel approaches to study climate change effects on terrestrial ecosystems in the field: Drought and passive nighttime warming

Beier C., Emmett B., Gundersen P., Tietema A., Peñuelas J., Estiarte M., Gordon C., Gorissen A., Llorens L., Roda F., Williams D. (2004) Novel approaches to study climate change effects on terrestrial ecosystems in the field: Drought and passive nighttime warming. Ecosystems. 7: 583-597.
Enllaç
Doi: 10.1007/s10021-004-0178-8

Resum:

This article describes new approaches for manipulation of temperature and water input in the field. Nighttime warming was created by reflection of infrared radiation. Automatically operated reflective curtains covered the vegetation at night to reduce heat loss to the atmosphere. This approach mimicked the way climate change, caused by increased cloudiness and increased greenhouse gas emissions, alters the heat balance of ecosystems. Drought conditions were created by automatically covering the vegetation with transparent curtains during rain events over a 2-5-month period. The experimental approach has been evaluated at four European sites across a climate gradient. All sites were dominated (more than 50%) by shrubs of the ericaceous family. Within each site, replicated 4-m X 5-m plots were established for control, warming, and drought treatments and the effect on climate variables recorded. Results over a two-year period indicate that the warming treatment was successful in achieving an increase of the minimum temperatures by 0.4-1.2°C in the air and soil. The drought treatment resulted in a soil moisture reduction of 33%-82% at the peak of the drought. The data presented demonstrate that the approach minimizes unintended artifacts with respect to water balance, moisture conditions, and light, while causing a small but significant reduction in wind speed by the curtains. Temperature measurements demonstrated that the edge effects associated with the treatments were small. Our method provides a valuable tool for investigating the effects of climate change in remote locations with minimal artifacts.

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Are phenolic compounds released from the Mediterranean shrub Cistus albidus responsible for changes in N cycling in siliceous and calcareous soils?

Castells E., Peñuelas J., Valentine D.W. (2004) Are phenolic compounds released from the Mediterranean shrub Cistus albidus responsible for changes in N cycling in siliceous and calcareous soils?. New Phytologist. 162: 187-195.
Enllaç
Doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8137.2004.01021.x

Resum:

We studied the effects of Cistus albidus leaf leachates on nitrogen-cycling processes in two siliceous soils (granite and schist) and one calcareous soil. We compared those effects with gross N-transformation rates in soils sampled underneath Cistus. Soils amended with leachates and soils sampled under Cistus had higher NH4+ immobilization and lower nitrification compared with control soils. Gross N mineralization increased under Cistus but decreased in soils amended with leachates. These effects were especially strong in granite soil. To determine whether phenolic compounds were causing those effects, we incubated granite soils with leachate and a leachate fraction containing only nonphenolic compounds. Nonphenolic compounds increased NH4+ immobilization and decreased gross nitrification, while decreases in gross N mineralization were estimated to be caused by phenolic compounds. Our results show that although phenolic compounds leached from green foliage changed gross N mineralization, their effects on net N rates were eclipsed by the changes produced by polar nonphenolic compounds such as carbohydrates. Plant nonphenolic compounds may drive N cycling under Cistus. © New Phytologist (2004).

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The response of soil processes to climate change: Results from manipulation studies of shrublands across an environmental gradient

Emmett B.A., Beier C., Estiarte M., Tietema A., Kristensen H.L., Williams D., Peñuelas J., Schmidt I., Sowerby A. (2004) The response of soil processes to climate change: Results from manipulation studies of shrublands across an environmental gradient. Ecosystems. 7: 625-637.
Enllaç
Doi: 10.1007/s10021-004-0220-x

Resum:

Predicted changes in climate may affect key soil processes such as respiration and net nitrogen (N) mineralization and thus key ecosystem functions such as carbon (C) storage and nutrient availability. To identify the sensitivity of shrubland soils to predicted climate changes, we have carried out experimental manipulations involving ecosystem warming and prolonged summer drought in ericaceous shrublands across a European climate gradient. We used retractable covers to create artificial nighttime warming and prolonged summer drought to 20-m2 experimental plots. Combining the data from across the environmental gradient with the results from the manipulation experiments provides evidence for strong climate controls on soil respiration, net N mineralization and nitrification, and litter decomposition. Trends of 0%-19% increases of soil respiration in response to warming and decreases of 3%-29% in response to drought were observed. Across the environmental gradient and below soil temperatures of 20°C at a depth of 5-10 cm, a mean Q10 of 4.1 in respiration rates was observed although this varied from 2.4 to 7.0 between sites. Highest Q10 values were observed in Spain and the UK and were therefore not correlated with soil temperature. A trend of increased accumulated surface litter mass loss was observed with experimental warming (2%-22%) but there was no consistent response to experimental drought. In contrast to soil respiration and decomposition, variability in net N mineralization was best explained by soil moisture rather than temperature. When water was neither limiting or in excess, a Q10 of 1.5 was observed for net N mineralization rates. These data suggest that key soil processes will be differentially affected by predicted changes in rainfall pattern and temperature and the net effect on ecosystem functioning will be difficult to predict without a greater understanding of the controls underlying the sensitivity of soils to climate variables.

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Indications of hydraulic lift by Pinus halepensis and its effects on the water relations of neighbour shrubs

Filella I., Peñuelas J. (2004) Indications of hydraulic lift by Pinus halepensis and its effects on the water relations of neighbour shrubs. Biologia Plantarum. 47: 209-214.
Enllaç
Doi: 10.1023/B:BIOP.0000022253.08474.fd

Resum:

We measured the stable deuterium isotopic composition of xylem sap, the shoot predawn and midday water potentials, and the leaf δ13C of Mediterranean shrubs Pistacia lentiscus, Globularia alypum and Rosmarinus officinalis in a south-oriented transect from a large (12 m tall) Aleppo pine tree, Pinus halepensis. We aimed to study the possibility of hydraulic lift from the deep roots of this pine tree to the shallow soil layers and its influence on these neighbour shrubs. These same traits were also studied in several individuals of the shrub Pistacia lentiscus growing with different types of neighbours: just shrubs, a small (3-4 m) pine tree, and the above mentioned large pine tree. The greater the distance from P. halepensis the plants grew, the higher xylem water SD, the lower the soil water content, and, the lower the predawn and midday water potentials were found. These results suggest the existence of an hydraulic lift from deep roots to shallow soil in this big tree. Further indication of this existence is provided by the improved water status of P. lentiscus (higher water potentials and δD, and lower δ13C and, therefore, lower water use efficiencies) when growing close to the big pine in comparison with the same shrub species growing close to small pines or just surrounded by other shrubs. Moreover, all these trends occurred in the dry summer season, but disappeared in the wet spring season.

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Reflectance assessment of seasonal and annual changes in biomass and CO2 uptake of a Mediterranean shrubland submitted to experimental warming and drought

Filella I., Peñuelas J., Llorens L., Estiarte M. (2004) Reflectance assessment of seasonal and annual changes in biomass and CO2 uptake of a Mediterranean shrubland submitted to experimental warming and drought. Remote Sensing of Environment. 90: 308-318.
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Doi: 10.1016/j.rse.2004.01.010

Resum:

We aimed to evaluate how the remote sensing vegetation indices NDVI and PRI responded to seasonal and annual changes in an early successional stage Mediterranean coastal shrubland canopy that was submitted to experimental warming and drought simulating predicted climate change for the next decades. These conditions were obtained by using a new non-intrusive methodological approach that increases the temperature and prolongs the drought period by using roofs that automatically cover the vegetation after the sunset or when it rains. On average, warming increased air temperature by 0.7°C and soil temperature by 1.6°C, and the drought treatment reduced soil moisture by 22%. We measured spectral reflectance at the canopy level and at the individual plant level seasonally during 4 years. Shrubland NDVI tracked the community development and activity. In control and warming treatments, NDVI increased with the years while it did not change in the drought treatment. There was a good relationship between NDVI and both community and individual plant biomass. NDVI also decreased in summer seasons when some species dry or decolour. The NDVI of E. multiflora plant individuals was lower in autumn and winter than in the other seasons, likely because of flowering. Shrubland PRI decreased only in winter, similarly to the PRI of the most dominant species, G. alypum. At this community scale, NDVI was better related than PRI to photosynthetic activity, probably because photosynthetic fluxes followed canopy seasonal greening in this complex canopy, which includes brevideciduous, annual and evergreen species and variable morphologies and canopy coverage. PRI followed the seasonal variations in photosynthetic rates in E. multiflora and detected the decreased photosynthetic rates of drought treatment. However, PRI did not track the photosynthetic rates of G. alypum plants which have lower LAIs than E. multiflora. In this community, which is in its early successional stages, NDVI was able to track biomass, and indirectly, CO2 uptake changes, likely because LAI values did not saturate NDVI. Thus, NDVI appears as a valid tool for remote tracking of this community development. PRI was less adequate for photosynthetic assessment of this community especially for its lower LAI canopies. PRI usefulness was also species-dependent and could also be affected by flowering. These results will help to improve the interpretation of remote sensing information on the structure and physiological status of these Mediterranean shrublands, and to gain better insight on ecological and environmental controls on their ecosystem carbon dioxide exchange. They also show the possibility of assessing the impacts of climate change on shrubland communities. © 2004 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Clima, cambios de uso y decaimiento del bosque.

Camarero JJ, Lloret F, Corcuera L, Peñuelas J, Gil-Pelegrín E (2004) Clima, cambios de uso y decaimiento del bosque. In Valladares F (ed) Ecología del bosque mediterráneo en un mundo cambiante. Ministerio de Medio Ambiente, Madrid, pp. 397-423.

Experimental evidences of climate change effects on plant recruitment in the Western Mediterranean Basin.

Lloret F, Peñuelas J, Estiarte M, Ogaya R (2004) Experimental evidences of climate change effects on plant recruitment in the Western Mediterranean Basin. In Arianoutsou M, Papanastasis VP (eds) Ecology, conservation and management of Mediterranean climate ecosystems. Millpress, Rotterdam. Edició en CD-ROM (ISBN-90-5966-016-1).

Establishment of co-existing Mediterranean tree species under a varying soil moisture regime.

Lloret F, Peñuelas J, Ogaya R (2004) Establishment of co-existing Mediterranean tree species under a varying soil moisture regime. Journal of Vegetation Science15:237-244.

Climate change affects carbon allocation to the soil in shrublands

Gorissen A., Tietema A., Joosten N.N., Estiarte M., Peñuelas J., Sowerby A., Emmett B.A., Beier C. (2004) Climate change affects carbon allocation to the soil in shrublands. Ecosystems. 7: 650-661.
Enllaç
Doi: 10.1007/s10021-004-0218-4

Resum:

Climate change may affect ecosystem functioning through increased temperatures or changes in precipitation patterns. Temperature and water availability are important drivers for ecosystem processes such as photosynthesis, carbon translocation, and organic matter decomposition. These climate changes may affect the supply of carbon and energy to the soil microbial population and subsequently alter decomposition and mineralization, important ecosystem processes in carbon and nutrient cycling. In this study, carried out within the cross-European research project CLIMOOR, the effect of climate change, resulting from imposed manipulations, on carbon dynamics in shrubland ecosystems was examined. We performed a 14C-labeling experiment to probe changes in net carbon uptake and allocation to the roots and soil compartments as affected by a higher temperature during the year and a drought period in the growing season. Differences in climate, soil, and plant characteristics resulted in a gradient in the severity of the drought effects on net carbon uptake by plants with the impact being most severe in Spain, followed by Denmark, with the UK showing few negative effects at significance levels of p ≤ 0.10. Drought clearly reduced carbon flow from the roots to the soil compartments. The fraction of the 14C fixed by the plants and allocated into the soluble carbon fraction in the soil and to soil microbial biomass in Denmark and the UK decreased by more than 60%. The effects of warming were not significant, but, as with the drought treatment, a negative effect on carbon allocation to soil microbial biomass was found. The changes in carbon allocation to soil microbial biomass at the northern sites in this study indicate that soil microbial biomass is a sensitive, early indicator of drought- or temperature-initiated changes in these shrubland ecosystems. The reduced supply of substrate to the soil and the response of the soil microbial biomass may help to explain the observed acclimation of CO2 exchange in other ecosystems.

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