Article

Carbon balance gradient in European forests: should we doubt ‘surprising’ results? A reply to Piovesan & Adams

Journal of Vegetation Science (Impact Factor: 2.82). 01/2001; 12(1):145 - 150. DOI: 10.1111/j.1654-1103.2001.tb02626.x

ABSTRACT This paper responds to the Forum contribution by Piovesan & Adams (2000) who criticized the results obtained by the EUROFLUX network on carbon fluxes of several European forests. The major point of criticism was that the data provided by EUROFLUX are inconsistent with current scientific understanding. It is argued that understanding the terrestrial global carbon cycle requires more than simply restating what was known previously, and that Piovesan & Adams have not been able to show any major conflicts between our findings and ecosystem or atmospheric-transport theories.

1 Bookmark
 · 
113 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Linking intraspecific variation in plant traits to ecosystem carbon uptake may allow us to better predict how shift in populations shape ecosystem function. We investigated whether plant populations of a dominant old-field plant species (Solidago altissima) differed in carbon dynamics and if variation in plant traits among genotypes and between populations predicted carbon dynamics. We estab-lished a common garden experiment with 35 genotypes from three populations of S. altissima from either Tennessee (southern populations) or Connecticut (north-ern populations) to ask whether: (1) southern and northern Solidago populations will differ in aboveground productivity, leaf area, flowering time and duration, and whole ecosystem carbon uptake, (2) intraspecific trait variation (growth and repro-duction) will be related to intraspecific variation in gross ecosystem CO 2 exchange (GEE) and net ecosystem CO 2 exchange (NEE) within and between northern and southern populations. GEE and NEE were 4.8× and 2× greater in southern rela-tive to northern populations. Moreover, southern populations produced 13× more aboveground biomass and 1.4× more inflorescence mass than did northern popu-lations. Flowering dynamics (first-and last-day flowering and flowering duration) varied significantly among genotypes in both the southern and northern popula-tions, but plant performance and ecosystem function did not. Both productivity and inflorescence mass predicted NEE and GEE between S. altissima southern and northern populations. Taken together, our data demonstrate that variation between S. altissima populations in performance and flowering traits are strong predictors of ecosystem function in a dominant old-field species and suggest that populations of the same species might differ substantially in their response to environmental perturbations.
    Ecology and Evolution 01/2012; doi: 10.1002/ece3.223. · 1.18 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: a b s t r a c t Old-growth forests are primarily found in mountain ranges that are less favorable or accessible for land use. Consequently, there are fewer scientific studies on old-growth forests. The eddy covariance method has been widely used as an alternative approach to studying an ecosystem's carbon balance, but only a few eddy flux sites are located in old-growth forest. This fact will hinder our ability to test hypotheses such as whether or not old-growth forests are carbon neutral. The eddy covariance approach was used to examine the carbon balance of a 300-year-old subtropical evergreen broadleaved forest that is located in the center of the largest subtropical land area in the world. The post-QA/QC (quality assurance and control) eddy covariance based NEP was w 9 tC ha À1 yr À1 , which suggested that this forest acts as a large carbon sink. The inventory data within the footprint of the eddy flux show that w6 tC ha À1 yr À1 was contributed by biomass and necromass. The large-and-old trees sequestered carbon. Approximately 60% of the biomass increment is contributed by the growth of large trees (DBH > 60 cm). The high-altitude-induced low temperature and the high diffusion-irradiation ratio caused by cloudiness were suggested as two reasons for the large carbon sink in the forest we studied. To analyze the complex structure and terrain of this old-growth forest, this study suggested that biometric measurements carried out simul-taneously with eddy flux measurements were necessary.
    Atmospheric Environment 01/2011; 45(8). · 3.11 Impact Factor
  • Source