Sandy Harrison

Sandy Harrison
University of Reading · Centre for Past Climate Change

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445
Publications
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52,624
Citations

Publications

Publications (445)
Article
Full-text available
Parameter identification for wildfire forecasting models often relies on case-by-case tuning or posterior diagnosis/analysis, which can be computationally expensive due to the complexity of the forward prediction model. In this paper, we introduce an efficient parameter flexible fire prediction algorithm based on machine learning and reduced order...
Article
Full-text available
Fire is an important influence on the global patterns of vegetation structure and composition. Wildfire is included as a distinct process in many dynamic global vegetation models (DGVMs) but limited current understanding of fire regimes restricts these models’ ability to reproduce more than the broadest geographic patterns. Here we present a statis...
Article
Full-text available
Charcoal accumulated in lake, bog or other anoxic sediments through time has been used to document the geographical patterns in changes in fire regimes. Such reconstructions are useful to explore the impact of climate and vegetation changes on fire during periods when human influence was less prevalent than today. However, charcoal records only pro...
Article
Full-text available
Aim: Biomisation has been the most widely used technique to reconstruct past regional vegetation patterns because it does not require an extensive modern pollen dataset. However, it has well-known limitations including its dependence on expert judgement for the assignment of pollen taxa to plant functional types (PFTs) and PFTs to biomes. Here we...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Biomisation has been the most widely used technique to reconstruct past regional vegetation patterns because it does not require an extensive modern pollen dataset. However, it has well-known limitations including its dependence on expert judgement for the assignment of pollen taxa to plant functional types (PFTs) and PFTs to biomes. Here we pr...
Article
Full-text available
Sedimentary charcoal records are widely used to reconstruct regional changes in fire regimes through time in the geological past. Existing global compilations are not geographically comprehensive and do not provide consistent metadata for all sites. Furthermore, the age models provided for these records are not harmonised and many are based on olde...
Article
Full-text available
1. Leaf morphological traits vary systematically along climatic gradients. However, recent studies in plant functional ecology have mainly analysed quantitative traits, while numerical models of species distributions and vegetation function have focused on traits associated with resource acquisition; both ignore the wider functional significance of...
Article
Changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration directly influence the ratio of stomatal water loss to carbon uptake. This ratio (e) is a fundamental quantity for terrestrial ecosystems, as it defines the water requirement for plant growth. Statistical and analogue-based methods used to reconstruct past hydroclimate variables from fossil...
Article
Full-text available
Vegetation regulates land‐atmosphere, water, and energy exchanges and is an essential component of land‐surface models (LSMs). However, LSMs have been handicapped by assumptions that equate acclimated photosynthetic responses to the environment with the fast responses observable in the laboratory. The effects of acclimation can be taken into accoun...
Preprint
Full-text available
Recent increases in vegetation cover, observed over much of the world, reflect increasing CO2 globally and warming in cold areas. However, the strength of the response to both CO2 and warming appears to be declining. Here we examine changes in vegetation cover on the Tibetan Plateau over the past 35 years. Although the climate trends are similar ac...
Preprint
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The Iberian Peninsula is characterised by a steep west-east moisture gradient today, reflecting the dominance of maritime influences along the Atlantic coast and more Mediterranean-type climate further east. Holocene pollen records from the Peninsula suggest that this gradient was less steep during the early to mid-Holocene, possibly reflecting the...
Article
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Recent extreme wildfire seasons in several regions have been associated with exceptionally hot, dry conditions, made more probable by climate change. Much research has focused on extreme fire weather and its drivers, but natural wildfire regimes – and their interactions with human activities – are far from being comprehensively understood. There is...
Article
Full-text available
Evaluation of potential crop yields is important for global food security assessment because it represents the biophysical 'ceiling' determined by variety, climate and ambient CO2. Statistical approaches have limitations when assessing future potential yields, while large differences between results obtained using process-based models reflect uncer...
Article
Full-text available
Although it has long been recognised that human activities affect fire regimes, the interactions between humans and fire are complex, imperfectly understood, constantly evolving, and lacking any kind of integrative global framework. Many different approaches are used to study human-fire interactions, but in general they have arisen in different dis...
Article
Full-text available
Lack of constraint on spatial and long-term temporal variability of the El Niño southern Oscillation (ENSO) and its sensitivity to external forcing limit our ability to evaluate climate models and ENSO future projections. Current knowledge of Holocene ENSO variability derived from paleoclimate reconstructions does not separate the role of insolatio...
Preprint
Full-text available
Sedimentary charcoal records are widely used to reconstruct regional changes in fire regimes through time in the geological past. Existing global compilations are not geographically comprehensive and do not provide consistent metadata for all sites. Furthermore, the age models provided for these records are not harmonised and many are based on olde...
Article
Full-text available
Close coupling between water loss and carbon dioxide uptake requires coordination of plant hydraulics and photosynthesis. However, there is still limited information on the quantitative relationships between hydraulic and photosynthetic traits. We propose a basis for these relationships based on optimality theory, and test its predictions by analys...
Article
Full-text available
The seasonal and longer-term dynamics of fuel accumulation affect fire seasonality and the occurrence of extreme wildfires. Failure to account for their influence may help to explain why state-of-the-art fire models do not simulate the length and timing of the fire season or interannual variability in burnt area well. We investigated the impact of...
Article
Full-text available
Global vegetation and land‐surface models embody interdisciplinary scientific understanding of the behaviour of plants and ecosystems, and are indispensable to project the impacts of environmental change on vegetation and the interactions between vegetation and climate. However, systematic errors and persistently large differences among carbon and...
Article
Full-text available
The Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, ∼ 21 000 years ago) has been a major focus for evaluating how well state-of-the-art climate models simulate climate changes as large as those expected in the future using paleoclimate reconstructions. A new generation of climate models has been used to generate LGM simulations as part of the Paleoclimate Modelling Int...
Preprint
Vegetation regulates land-atmosphere water and energy exchanges and is an essential component of land-surface models (LSMs). However, LSMs have been handicapped by assumptions that equate acclimated photosynthetic responses to environment with fast responses observable in the laboratory. These time scales can be distinguished by including specific...
Preprint
Full-text available
Charcoal accumulated in lake, bog or other anoxic sediments through time has been used to document the geographical patterns in changes in fire regimes. Such reconstructions are useful to explore the impact of climate and vegetation changes on fire during periods when the human influence was less prevalent than today. However, charcoal records only...
Article
Full-text available
In the 12,000 years preceding the Industrial Revolution, human activities led to significant changes in land cover, plant and animal distributions, surface hydrology, and biochemical cycles. Earth system models suggest that this anthropogenic land cover change influenced regional and global climate. However, the representation of past land use in e...
Preprint
Full-text available
The coupling between water loss and carbon dioxide uptake drives the coordination of plant hydraulic and photosynthetic traits. Analysing multi-species measurements on a 3000 m elevation gradient, we found that hydraulic and leaf-economic traits were less plastic, and more phylogenetically patterned, than photosynthetic traits. The two trait sets a...
Article
Full-text available
The El Cañizar de Villarquemado pollen record covers the last part of MIS 6 to the Late Holocene. We use Tolerance-Weighted Averaging Partial Least Squares (TWA-PLS) to reconstruct mean temperature of the coldest month (MTCO) and growing degree days above 0°C (GDD 0 ) and the ratio of annual precipitation to annual potential evapotranspiration (MI)...
Article
Full-text available
Leaf mass per area (Ma), nitrogen content per unit leaf area (Narea), maximum carboxylation capacity (Vcmax) and the ratio of leaf-internal to ambient CO2 partial pressure (χ) are important traits related to photosynthetic function, and show systematic variation along climatic and elevational gradients. Separating the effects of air pressure and cl...
Article
Quantitative reconstructions of past climates are an important resource for evaluating how well climate models reproduce climate changes. One widely used statistical approach for making such reconstructions from fossil biotic assemblages is weighted averaging partial least-squares regression (WA-PLS). There is however a known tendency for WA-PLS to...
Preprint
Full-text available
The seasonal and longer-term dynamics of fuel accumulation affect fire seasonality and the occurrence of extreme wildfires. Failure to account for their influence may help to explain why state-of-the-art fire models do not simulate the length and timing of the fire season or interannual variability in burnt area well. We investigated the impact of...
Data
If you use the dataset, please cite the reference: Song, X., Li, F., Harrison, S. P., Luo, T., Arneth, A., Forrest, M., Hantson, S., Lasslop, G., Mangeon, S., and Ni, J.: Vegetation biomass change in China in the 20th century: An assessment based on a combination of multi-model simulations and field observations, Environ. Res. Lett.,15, 094026, ht...
Article
Full-text available
The mid-Holocene (6000 years ago) is a standard time period for the evaluation of the simulated response of global climate models using palaeoclimate reconstructions. The latest mid-Holocene simulations are a palaeoclimate entry card for the Palaeoclimate Model Intercomparison Project (PMIP4) component of the current phase of the Coupled Model Inte...
Article
Full-text available
Vegetation biomass is a key and active component of the carbon cycle. Though China’s vegetation biomass in recent decades has been widely investigated, only two studies have quantitatively assessed its century-scale changes so far and reported totally opposite trends. This study provided the first multi-model estimates of China’s vegetation biomass...
Article
Full-text available
Global fire-vegetation models are widely used to assess impacts of environmental change on fire regimes and the carbon cycle and to infer relationships between climate, land use and fire. However, differences in model structure and parameterizations, in both the vegetation and fire components of these models, could influence overall model performan...
Article
Full-text available
Most techniques for pollen-based quantitative climate reconstruction use modern assemblages as a reference data set. We examine the implication of methodological choices in the selection and treatment of the reference data set for climate reconstructions using Weighted Averaging Partial Least Squares (WA-PLS) regression and records of the last glac...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, we use simulations from seven global vegetation models to provide the first multi‐model estimate of fire impacts on global tree cover and the carbon cycle under current climate and anthropogenic land use conditions, averaged for the years 2001‐2012. Fire reduces the tree covered area and vegetation carbon storage by 10%. Regionally t...
Article
Plants and vegetation play a critical—but largely unpredictable—role in global environmental changes due to the multitude of contributing processes at widely different spatial and temporal scales. In this Perspective, we explore approaches to master this complexity and improve our ability to predict vegetation dynamics by explicitly taking account...
Article
Full-text available
We present a new global reconstruction of seasonal climates at the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 21 000 years BP) made using 3-D variational data assimilation with pollen-based site reconstructions of six climate variables and the ensemble average of the PMIP3—CMIP5 simulations as a prior (initial estimate of LGM climate). We assume that the correlati...
Article
Full-text available
Pollen data are widely used to reconstruct past climate changes, using relationships between modern pollen abundance in surface samples and climate at the surface‐sample sites as a calibration. Visualisation of modern pollen data in multi‐dimensional climate space provides a way to establish that taxon abundances are well behaved before using them...
Article
Full-text available
Terrestrial photosynthesis is the basis for vegetation growth and drives the land carbon cycle. Accurately simulating gross primary production (GPP, ecosystem-level apparent photosynthesis) is key for satellite monitoring and Earth system model predictions under climate change. While robust models exist for describing leaf-level photosynthesis, pre...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic changes in land use and land cover (LULC) during the pre-industrial Holocene could have affected regional and global climate. Existing scenarios of LULC changes during the Holocene are based on relatively simple assumptions and highly uncertain estimates of population changes through time. Archaeological and palaeoenvironmental recons...
Article
Full-text available
Climate exerts a major influence on crop development and yield. Despite extensive modelling efforts, there is still considerable uncertainty about the consequences of a changing climate for the yields of major crops. Existing crop models are complex and rely on many assumptions and parameters, motivating a quest for more parsimonious models with st...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. The Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, ~ 21,000 years ago) has been a major focus for evaluating how well state-of-the-art climate models simulate climate changes as large as those expected in the future using paleoclimate reconstructions. A new generation of climate models have been used to generate LGM simulations as part of the Palaeoclimate M...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. The mid-Holocene (6000 years ago) is a standard experiment for the evaluation of the simulated response of global climate models using paleoclimate reconstructions. The latest mid-Holocene simulations are a contribution by the Palaeoclimate Model Intercomparison Project (PMIP4) to the current phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Pro...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Abstract. Global fire-vegetation models are widely used to assess impacts of environmental change on fire regimes and the carbon cycle, and to infer relationships between climate, land use, and fire. However, differences in model structure and parameterizations, in both the vegetation and fire components of these models, could influence...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract We describe a method for reconstructing spatially explicit maps of seasonal paleoclimate variables from site‐based reconstructions. Using a 3‐D‐Variational technique, the method finds the best statistically unbiased, and spatially continuous, estimate of the paleoclimate anomalies through combining the site‐based reconstructions and a prio...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding how fire regimes change over time is of major importance for understanding their future impact on the Earth system, including society. Large differences in simulated burned area between fire models show that there is substantial uncertainty associated with modelling global change impacts on fire regimes. We draw here on sensitivity si...
Article
Full-text available
Terrestrial photosynthesis is the basis for vegetation growth and drives the land carbon cycle. Accurately simulating gross primary production (GPP, ecosystem-level apparent photosynthesis) is key for satellite monitoring and Earth System Model predictions under climate change. While robust models exist for describing leaf-level photosynthesis, pre...
Presentation
Part of the session: Upscaling palaeoecological, archaeological and historical records of land-use and land-cover change 1. Chair Marie-Jose Gaillard. Presentation abstact :The PAGES LandCover6K group is concerned with whether prehistoric human impacts on land cover were sufficiently large to have had a major impact on regional and global climate...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic changes in land use and land cover (LULC) during the pre-industrial Holocene could have affected regional and global climate. Current LULC scenarios are based on relatively simple assumptions and highly uncertain estimates of population changes through time. Archaeological and palaeoenvironmental reconstructions have the potential to...
Preprint
Full-text available
We present a new global reconstruction of seasonal climates at the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 21,000 yr BP) made using 3-D variational data assimilation with pollen-based site reconstructions of six climate variables and the ensemble average of the PMIP3/CMIP5 simulations as a prior. We assume that the correlation matrix of the errors of the prior...
Article
Full-text available
Before tree-ring series can be used to quantify climatic influences on growth, ontogenetic and microenvironmental effects must be removed. Existing statistical detrending methods struggle to eliminate bias, caused by the fact that older/larger trees are nearly always more abundantly sampled during the most recent decades – which happens also to hav...
Preprint
Full-text available
We describe a new method for reconstructing spatially explicit maps of seasonal palaeoclimate variables from site based reconstructions. Using a 3D-Variational technique, the method finds the best linear unbiased estimate of the palaeoclimate given the site based reconstructions and a prior estimate. By assuming a set of Gaussian correlations in th...
Article
Full-text available
The El Cañizar de Villarquemado sequence provides a palaeoenvironmental record from the western Mediterranean Basin spanning the interval from the last part of MIS6 to the late Holocene. The pollen and sedimentological records provide qualitative information about changes in temperature seasonality and moisture conditions. We use Weighted Averaging...
Article
The conventional representation of Plant Functional Types (PFTs) in Dynamic Global Vegetation Models (DGVMs) is increasingly recognized as simplistic and lacking in predictive power. Key ecophysiological traits, including photosynthetic parameters, are typically assigned single values for each PFT while the substantial trait variation within PFTs i...