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RSS FeedsRemote Sensing, Vol. 14, Pages 4893: On the Impacts of Historical and Future Climate Changes to the Sustainability of the Main Sardinian Forests (Remote Sensing)


30 september 2022 15:22:52

Remote Sensing, Vol. 14, Pages 4893: On the Impacts of Historical and Future Climate Changes to the Sustainability of the Main Sardinian Forests (Remote Sensing)

The Mediterranean Basin is affected by climate changes that may have negative effects on forests. This study aimed to evaluate the ability of 17 forests located in the Island of Sardinia to resist or adapt to the past and future climate. Sardinia is experiencing a decreasing anthropic pressure on forests, but drought-triggered dieback in trees was recently observed and confirmed by the analysis of 20 years of satellite tree-cover data (MOD44B). Significant negative trends in yearly tree cover have affected the broad-leaved vegetation, while significative positive trends were found in the bushy sclerophyllous vegetation. Vegetation behavior resulted in being related to the mean annual precipitation (MAP); for MAP < 700 mm, we found a decline in the tall broad-leaved stands and an increase in the short ones, and the opposite was found for bushy sclerophyllous vegetations. In forests with MAP > 700 mm, both stands are stable, regardless of the growing trends in the vapor-pressure deficit (VPD) and temperature. No significative correlation between bushy sclerophyllous tree cover and the climate drivers was found, while broad-leaved tree cover is positively related to MAP1990–2019 and negatively related to the growing annual VPD. We modeled those relationships, and then we used them to coarsely predict the effects of twelve future scenarios (derived from HADGEM2-AO (CMIP5) and HadGEM3-GC31-LL (CMIP6) models) on forest tree covers. All scenarios show an annual VPD increase, and the higher its increase, the higher the trees-cover loss. The future changes in precipitation were contrasting. SC6, in line with past precipitation trends, predicts a further drop in the mean annual precipitation (−7.6%), which would correspond to an average 2.1-times-greater reduction in the tree cover (−16.09%). The future changes in precipitation for CMIP6 scenarios agree on a precipitation reduction in the range of −3.4% (SC7) to −14.29% (S12). However, although the reduction in precipitation predicted in SC12 is almost double that predicted in SC6, the consequent average reduction in TC is comparable and stands at −16%. On the contrary, SC2 predicts a turnaround with an abrupt increase of precipitation (+21.5%) in the upcoming years, with a reduction in the number of forests in water-limited areas and an increase in the percentage of tree cover in almost all forests.

91 viewsCategory: Geology, Physics
Remote Sensing, Vol. 14, Pages 4886: Comparison of S5P/TROPOMI Inferred NO2 Surface Concentrations with In Situ Measurements over Central Europe (Remote Sensing)
Remote Sensing, Vol. 14, Pages 4898: Monitoring Non-Linear Ground Motion above Underground Gas Storage Using GNSS and PSInSAR Based on Sentinel-1 Data (Remote Sensing)
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