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Understanding the effects of climate change is one of the most challenging goals for biodiversity conservation. The forests of Andalusia, in Southern Spain, are part of an important Mediterranean Basin biodiversity hotspot. However, great changes in climate are expected to occur in this region, and there is an increasing need to assess the vulnerability of its vegetation. We assess the vulnerability of twelve forest types in the region that are included in the European Directive 92/43/EEC as Habitats of Community Interest (HCI). HCI are natural habitat types which are in danger, have a small natural range, or present an outstanding example of a biogeographical regions in the European Union. We assessed vulnerability by analyzing the climate exposure level of each forest type under two global climate models (MRI-CGCM3, which predicts warmer and wetter conditions, and MIROC-ESM which predicts hotter and drier conditions), two emission scenarios (RCP4.5, a representative concentration pathway that predicts stable emissions of CO2, and RCP8.5, that predicts the highest CO2 emissions) by the mid- and end-century time periods. The vulnerability analysis also includes the sensitivity and adaptive capacity of the dominant tree species which compose each forest type. An overall vulnerability score was calculated for each forest type, model, scenario and time period. High-elevation forest types and those with high moisture requirements were more vulnerable to climate change, while forest types dominated by more thermophilic species were less vulnerable and more resilient. The worst climate impacts were predicted in the MIROC-ESM model and RCP8.5 scenario by the end of the century (2070-2100), while the least climatic stress was obtained in the MRI-CGCM3 model and RCP4.5 scenario by the mid-century (2040-2070), which still shows high potential stress for most forest types. By the end of the century, the climate exposure of the entire forest domain will range between 32 % in the least stressful situation (MRI-CGCM3 and RCP4.5), and 98 % in the most climatically stressful situation (MIROC-ESM and RCP8.5). However, the effects of climate change will be perceptible by the mid-century, with most of the HCI forest types suffering climate stress. The "Andalusian oak forest" and the "Corylus wet forest" types were the most vulnerable to climate change, while the "Mediterranean pine forest", the "Olea and Ceratonia forests" and the "oak forests" were the least vulnerable. This assessment identifies the vulnerable forest types to climate change in the south of the Iberian Peninsula, and provides context for natural resource managers in making decisions about how to adapt forests to the impacts of climate change.
It has been scientifically proven that climate change is a reality. In subarid Mediterranean limates, this fact is observed in the irregular distribution of rainfall, resulting in alternating periods of more or less prolonged drought with episodes of torrential rains concentrated in short periods of time. We have selected 11 natural areas in southern Spain, where we will observe these circumstances and where a series of ecosystems composed of vegetation covers of a high ecological value are found. We start from the question of whether these climatic circumstances are really deteriorating them. For this study, we propose a method that combines three analysis techniques: the design of the time series, the application of vegetation indices, and the use of techniques analysis of changes in land use. From the combination of these techniques in the period from 1997 to 2021, we have observed that there have been a dynamic of changes in land use that has maintained its original characteristics by more than 70%, so it is possible to affirm that the adaptation of ecosystems to climatic conditions has occurred satisfactorily. However, this general statement shows some particularities which are those that we will show in this work.
Climate change already challenges people's livelihood globally and it also affects plant health. Rising temperatures facilitate the introduction and establishment of unwanted organisms, including arthropods, pathogens, and weeds (hereafter collectively called pests). For example, a single, unusually warm winter under temperate climatic conditions may be sufficient to assist the establishment of invasive plant pests, which otherwise would not be able to establish. In addition, the increased market globalization and related transport of recent years, coupled with increased temperatures, has led to favorable conditions for pest movement, invasion, and establishment worldwide. Most published studies indicate that, in general, pest risk will increase in agricultural ecosystems under climate-change scenarios, especially in today's cooler arctic, boreal, temperate, and subtropical regions. This is also mostly true for forestry. Some pests have already expanded their host range or distribution, at least in part due to changes in climate. Examples of these pests, selected according to their relevance in different geographical areas, are summarized here. The main pathways used by them, directly and/or indirectly, are also discussed. Understanding these pathways can support decisions about mitigation and adaptation measures. The review concludes that preventive mitigation and adaptation measures, including biosecurity, are key to reducing the projected increases in pest risk in agriculture, horticulture, and forestry. Therefore, the sustainable management of pests is urgently needed. It requires holistic solutions, including effective phytosanitary regulations, globally coordinated diagnostic and surveillance systems, pest risk modeling and analysis , and preparedness for pro-active management.
Climatic warming is increasing regionally and globally, and results concerning warming and its consequent drought impacts have been reported extensively. However, due to a lack of quantitative analysis of warming severities, it is still unclear how warming and warming-induced drought influence leaf functional traits, particularly how the traits coordinate with each other to cope with climatic change. To address these uncertainties, we performed a field experiment with ambient, moderate and severe warming regimes in an arid ecosystem over 4 years.
Severe warming significantly reduced the specific leaf area and net photosynthetic rate with a relatively stable change and even enhancement under moderate warming, especially showing species-specific performance. The current results largely indicate that a coordinated trade-off can exist between plant functional traits in plant communities in a dryland ecosystem under ambient temperature conditions, which is strongly amplified by moderate warming but diminished or even eliminated by severe warming. Based on the present findings and recent results in the relevant literature, we advance the ecological conceptual models (e.g., LES and CSR) in the response to climatic warming in arid grassland communities, where the few key species play a crucial role by balancing their functional performances to cope with environmental change.
Our results highlight the importance of coordination and/or trade-off between leaf functional traits for understanding patterns of climatic change-induced vegetation degradation and suggest that the plant community composition in these drylands could be shifted under future climate change.
The chestnut tree is an important forestry species worldwide, as well as a valuable food resource. Over recent years, Portugal has shown an increasing trend in chestnut tree area, as well as increases in production, hinting at the socioeconomic relevance of this agro-forestry species. In this study, bioclimatic indices are applied to analyse the spatial distribution of chestnut trees in mainland Portugal, namely growing degree days (GDD; 1900–2400 °C), annual mean temperature (AMT; 8–15 °C), summer days with maximum temperature below 32 °C (NTX), and annual precipitation (PRE; 600–1600 mm). These indices are assessed for the baseline (IBERIA01, 1989–2005) and future climates (EURO-CORDEX: 2021–2040, 2041–2060, and 2061–2080) under two forcing pathways (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5), also taking into account the chestnut tree land cover. For the baseline, the GDD showed only 10% suitability for chestnut tree cultivation in southern Portugal, whereas much higher values are found in the north of the country, and at higher altitudes (50–90%). For the AMT, higher elevation areas in northern Portugal show almost 100% suitability. Concerning NTX, the suitability reduces from the west (100–90%) to the east (40%). Regarding PRE, the suitability is heterogeneous throughout the territory, with areas under 50%. A new Chestnut Suitability Index (CSI) was then computed, which incorporates information from the four previous indices. The CSI reveals a suitability ranging from 100 to 75% in the north, while central and southern Portugal show values from 25 to 50%. For future climates, a progressive reduction in CSI was found, particularly for RCP8.5 and in the long-term period. Changes in bioclimatic conditions may restrict the 100% suitability to a narrow area in the north of the country. These reductions in chestnut bioclimatic suitability may have socio-economic and ecological implications for the management of the important agro-forestry species.
This paper presents the results of a systematic review of temperature and precipitation extremes over the Iberian Peninsula, focusing on observed changes in temperature and precipitation during the past years and what are the projected changes by the end of the 21st century. The purpose of this review is to assess the current literature about extreme events and their change under global warming. Observational and climate modeling studies from the past decade were considered in this review. Based on observational evidence and in climate modeling experiments, mean and maximum temperatures are projected to increase about 2 °C around the mid-century and up to 4 °C by the end of the century. The more pronounced warming is expected in summer for the central-south region of IP, with temperatures reaching 6 °C to 8 °C around 2100. Days with maximum temperature exceeding 30 °C and 40 °C will become more common (20 to 50 days/year), and the heatwaves will be 7 to 10 times more frequent. Significative reduction in events related to cold extremes. The climate change signal for precipitation in IP shows a considerable decline in precipitation (10–15%) for all seasons except winter. It is predicted that heavy precipitation will increase by 7% to 15%. Extreme precipitation will increase slightly (5%) by mid-century, then decline to 0% by 2100. Significant reduction in wet days (40% to 60%) followed by a dryness trend more pronounced by the end of the century.
This book contains 28 chapters grouped into six sections providing information on forests interact with the other components of the physical and natural world with the human society, and how we could manage forests globally to make the most of their contribution to mitigation of climate change along with the established objective of sustainable management to maximize the full range of economic and non-market benefits which forests provide. Topics covered include: introduction on the interaction between forests and climate change; climate change, forestry and science-policy interface; forestry options for contributing to climate change mitigation; options for adaptation due to impacts of climate change on forests; current and future policy of national and international frameworks; and implications for future forestry and related environmental and development policy.
Forest ecosystems in the Mediterranean Basin are mostly situated in the north of the Basin (mesic). In the most southern and dry areas, the forest can only exist where topography and/or altitude favor a sufficient availability of water to sustain forest biomass. We have conducted a thorough review of recent literature (2000–2021) that clearly indicates large direct and indirect impacts of increasing drought conditions on the forests of the Mediterranean Basin, their changes in surface and distribution areas, and the main impacts they have suffered. We have focused on the main trends that emerge from the current literature and have highlighted the main threatens and management solution for the maintenance of these forests. The results clearly indicate large direct and indirect impacts of increasing drought conditions on the forests of the Mediterranean Basin. These increasing drought conditions together with over-exploitation, pest expansion, fire and soil degradation, are synergistically driving to forest regression and dieback in several areas of this Mediterranean Basin. These environmental changes have triggered responses in tree morphology, physiology, growth, reproduction, and mortality. We identified at least seven causes of the changes in the last three decades that have led to the current situation and that can provide clues for projecting the future of these forests: (i) The direct effect of increased aridity due to more frequent and prolonged droughts, which has driven Mediterranean forest communities to the limit of their capacity to respond to drought and escape to wetter sites, (ii) the indirect effects of drought, mainly by the spread of pests and fires, (iii) the direct and indirect effects of anthropogenic activity associated with general environmental degradation, including soil degradation and the impacts of fire, species invasion and pollution, (iv) human pressure and intense management of water resources, (v) agricultural land abandonment in the northern Mediterranean Basin without adequate management of new forests, (vi) very high pressure on forested areas of northern Africa coupled with the demographic enhancement, the expansion of crops and higher livestock pressure, and the more intense and overexploitation of water resources uses on the remaining forested areas, and (vii) scarcity and inequality of human management and policies, depending on the national and/or regional governments and agencies, being unable to counteract the previous changes. We identified appropriate measures of management intervention, using the most adequate techniques and processes to counteract these impacts and thus to conserve the health, service capacity, and biodiversity of Mediterranean forests. Future policies should, moreover, promote research to improve our knowledge of the mechanisms of, and the effects on, nutrient and carbon plant-soil status concurrent with the impacts of aridity and leaching due to the effects of current changes. Finally, we acknowledge the difficulty to obtain an accurate quantification of the impacts of increasing aridity rise that warrants an urgent investment in more focused research to further develop future tools in order to counteract the negative effects of climate change on Mediterranean forests.
Although forest areas have been growing in Europe, some forest types have been declining regionally. Since the 1980 s, there have been reports of defoliation and mortality in evergreen oak woodlands of the Iberian Peninsula. However, long-term and large-scale trends of Iberian oak decline are still poorly understood. We quantified trends in canopy cover for cork oak (Quercus suber) and holm oak (Q. rotundifolia) woodlands in mainland Portugal for a 50 year period (1965 to 2015). We considered loss of canopy cover a proxy of forest degradation and asked how it changed over time, in association with human activity and climate. Between 1965 and 2015, both cork oak and holm oak canopy cover showed declining trends (57.9% and 71.1% of sampling points, respectively). Canopy cover dynamics, however, differed across time. Between 1965 and 1990, canopy cover gains (over 35% of sampling points) prevailed over losses (under 20%), with larger differences for cork oak than holm oak. Between 1990 and 2015, canopy cover losses (over 70% of sampling points) were much higher than gains (under 9%). Oak canopy cover decrease was associated with flatter areas (usually having more intensive land use) for both oak species, higher cattle numbers (holm oak only) and higher mean temperature (cork oak only). Contrastingly, loss of holm oak canopy cover seems to have occurred in less hot and dry regions that enable more intensive land uses. Active restoration is urgently needed to reverse the current decline in canopy cover in Mediterranean evergreen oak woodlands.
Climate simulation-based scenarios are routinely used to characterize a range of plausible climate futures. Despite some recent progress on bending the emissions curve, RCP8.5, the most aggressive scenario in assumed fossil fuel use for global climate models, will continue to serve as a useful tool for quantifying physical climate risk, especially over near- to midterm policy-relevant time horizons. Not only are the emissions consistent with RCP8.5 in close agreement with historical total cumulative CO 2 emissions (within 1%), but RCP8.5 is also the best match out to midcentury under current and stated policies with still highly plausible levels of CO 2 emissions in 2100.
The EUNIS Habitat Classification is a widely used reference framework for European habitat types (habitats), but it lacks formal definitions of individual habitats that would enable their unequivocal identification. Our goal was to develop a tool for assigning vegetation‐plot records to the habitats of the EUNIS system, use it to classify a European vegetation‐plot database, and compile statistically‐derived characteristic species combinations and distribution maps for these habitats.
We developed the classification expert system EUNIS‐ESy, which contains definitions of individual EUNIS habitats based on their species composition and geographic location. Each habitat was formally defined as a formula in a computer language combining algebraic and set‐theoretic concepts with formal logical operators. We applied this expert system to classify 1,261,373 vegetation plots from the European Vegetation Archive (EVA) and other databases. Then we determined diagnostic, constant and dominant species for each habitat by calculating species‐to‐habitat fidelity and constancy (occurrence frequency) in the classified dataset. Finally, we mapped the plot locations for each habitat.
Formal definitions were developed for 199 habitats at Level 3 of the EUNIS hierarchy, including 25 coastal, 18 wetland, 55 grassland, 43 shrubland, 46 forest and 12 man‐made habitats. The expert system classified 1,125,121 vegetation plots to these habitat groups and 73,188 to other habitats, while 63,064 plots remained unclassified or were classified to more than one habitat. Data on each habitat were summarized in factsheets containing habitat description, distribution map, corresponding syntaxa and characteristic species combination.
EUNIS habitats were characterized for the first time in terms of their species composition and distribution, based on a classification of a European database of vegetation plots using the newly developed electronic expert system EUNIS‐ESy. The data provided and the expert system have considerable potential for future use in European nature conservation planning, monitoring and assessment.
Analyzing differences in tolerance to drought in Quercus spp., and the characterization of these responses at the species and individual population level, are imperative for the selection of resilient elite genotypes in reforestation programs. The main objective of this work was to evaluate differences in the response and tolerance to water shortage under in five Quercus spp. and five Andalusian Q. ilex populations at the inter- and intraspecies level. Six-month-old seedlings grown in perlite were subjected to drought treatments by withholding water for 28 days under mean 37 °C temperature, 28 W m-2 solar irradiance, and 41% humidity. The use of perlite as the substrate enabled the establishment of severe drought stress with reduction in water availability from 73% (field capacity) to 28% (dryness), corresponding to matric potentials of 0 and −30 kPa. Damage symptoms, mortality rate, leaf water content, photosynthetic, and biochemical parameters (amino acids, sugars, phenolics, and pigments) were determined. At the phenotypic level, based on damage symptoms and mortality, Q. ilex behaved as the most drought tolerant species. Drought caused a significant decrease in leaf fluorescence, photosynthesis rate, and stomatal conductance in all Quercus spp. analyzed, being less pronounced in Q. ilex. There were not differences between irrigated and non-irrigated Q. ilex seedlings in the content of sugar and photosynthetic pigments, while the total amino acid and phenolic content significantly increased under drought conditions. As a response to drought, living Q. ilex seedlings adjust stomata opening and gas exchange, and keep hydrated, photosynthetically active, and metabolically competent. At the population level, based on damage symptoms, mortality, and physiological parameters, the eastern Andalusian populations were more tolerant than the western ones. These observations inform the basis for the selection of resilient genotypes to be used in breeding and reforestation programs.
Natural resource managers need information about the risks associated with climate change to provide guidance on where to implement various management practices on natural lands. The spatial variation of projected impacts within a vegetation type can be used to target climate‐adaptive management actions because different locations will be exposed to different levels of climatic stress. Vegetation refugia are areas that retain non‐stressful climate conditions under future climates. Consensus vegetation refugia – areas retaining suitable climates under both wetter and drier future projections – represent only 14.6% of California's natural vegetation. One state and one federal government agency have incorporated vegetation refugia maps into conservation planning for 522 vertebrate species and for post‐wildfire reforestation. Monitoring how vegetation responds to management actions at sites within vegetation refugia can improve the conservation of plants subjected to a changing climate.
New data on the flora and vegetation of Sierra Prieta mountain range (Serrania de Ronda, Malaga, Spain)Palabras clave. Flora, asociaciones vegetales, Ronda, Málaga, España.Key words. Flora, plant communities, Ronda, Malaga, Spain.
Climate change is expected to cause major changes in forest ecosystems during the 21 st century and beyond. To assess forest impacts from climate change, the existing empirical information must be structured, harmonised and assimilated into a form suitable to develop and test state-of-the-art forest and ecosystem models. The combination of empirical data collected at large spatial and long temporal scales with suitable modelling approaches is key to understand forest dynamics under climate change. To facilitate data and model integration, https://doi.
Plant traits—the morphological, anatomical, physiological, biochemical and phenological characteristics of plants—determine how plants respond to environmental factors, affect other trophic levels, and influence ecosystem properties and their benefits and detriments to people. Plant trait data thus represent the basis for a vast area of research spanning from evolutionary biology, community and functional ecology, to biodiversity conservation, ecosystem and landscape management, restoration, biogeography and earth system modelling. Since its foundation in 2007, the TRY database of plant traits has grown continuously. It now provides unprecedented data coverage under an open access data policy and is the main plant trait database used by the research community worldwide. Increasingly, the TRY database also supports new frontiers of trait-based plant research, including the identification of data gaps and the subsequent mobilization or measurement of new data. To support this development, in this article we evaluate the extent of the trait data compiled in TRY and analyse emerging patterns of data coverage and representativeness. Best species coverage is achieved for categorical traits—almost complete coverage for ‘plant growth form’. However, most traits relevant for ecology and vegetation modelling are characterized by continuous intraspecific variation and trait– nvironmental relationships.
These traits have to be measured on individual plants in their respective
environment. Despite unprecedented data coverage, we observe a humbling lack of completeness and representativeness of these continuous traits in many aspects. We, therefore, conclude that reducing data gaps and biases in the TRY database remains a key challenge and requires a coordinated approach to data mobilization and trait measurements. This can only be achieved in collaboration with other initiatives.
The plant variability in the southern Iberian Peninsula consists of around 3500 different taxa due to its high bioclimatic, geographic, and geological diversity. The deciduous forests in the southern Iberian Peninsula are located in regions with topographies and specific bioclimatic conditions that allow for the survival of taxa that are typical of cooler and wetter bioclimatic regions and therefore represent the relict evidence of colder and more humid paleoclimatic conditions. The floristic composition of 421 samples of deciduous forests in the south-central part of the Iberian Peninsula were analyzed. The ecological importance index (IVI) was calculated, where the most important tree species were Quercus pyrenaica, Acer opalus subsp. Granatensis, and Corylus avellana. These species are uncommon in the south-central part of the Iberian Peninsula, forming forests of little extension. An analysis of the vertical distribution of the species (stratum) shows that the majority of the species of stratum 3 (hemicriptophics, camephytes, geophites, and nanophanerophytes) are characteristic of deciduous forests, and their presence is positively correlated with high values of bioclimatic variables related to humidity and presence of water in the soil (nemoral environments), while they are negatively correlated with high values of bioclimatic variables related to high temperatures, evapotranspiration, and aridity. This work demonstrates that several characteristic deciduous forest taxa are more vulnerable to disappearance due to the loss of their nemoral conditions caused by gaps in the tree or shrub canopy. These gaps lead to an increase in evapotranspiration, excess insolation, and a consequent loss of water and humidity in the microclimatic conditions.
The impacts of climate change traverse administrative borders, which calls for new strategies for forest ecosystem conservation and adaptive management. Despite relatively high biodiversity, the temperate forests in East Asia have lacked a comprehensive regional evaluation of potential climate change impacts. Here, we assess the level of climate change exposure of the Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests Biome of East Asia by 2070. These temperate forests occupy 18 ecoregions, five countries, and 102 provinces. We categorize climate change exposure by classifying baseline (1960–1990) climate conditions for the current geographic distribution of five temperate forest types within each ecoregion and within the biome. We then measure the level of change under four future climates: a warmer or a hotter future climate and under reduced emissions (RCP4.5) or with emissions continuing unabated (RCP8.5). By 2070, using the RCP8.5 emission scenario, 24.5–65.7% of these forests enter non-analog or the most marginal 1% of baseline climate conditions. These results reveal the need for extensive transboundary governmental coordination, including forest preservation actions among 51 of 54 provinces that will retain some forest locations in climatically stable or low-risk conditions. Furthermore, among 96 provinces with forests that will be highly exposed, 90 will require transboundary climate change adaptation strategies because these forests span their borders, including the border areas of China, the Russian Federation, and North Korea. The analytical approach of this study could serve as a template for supporting transboundary institutional coordination to address climate change.
Current knowledge of climate change effects on forest ecology and species conservation should be linked to understanding of the past-time. Abies pinsapoforests constitute a model of an endangered ecosystem, highly vulnerable to ongoing warming, whose populations have been declining for centuries, while the drivers of this local depletion trend remain poorly understood. We hypothesized that long-term disturbances, both human- and natural-induced, have shaped A. pinsapo forests, contributing to these decline processes. Until today, studies using fossil pollen record to identify past climate impacts and land-use changes on A. pinsapo populations have not been done. Here, we investigate forests’ dynamics since the late Holocene (1180 cal. AD to present) in Southern Iberian Peninsula from a fossil pollen record by comparing the results obtained with climate fluctuations and land-uses changes. The pollen sequence shows a phase of stability during the Islamic Period (~1180–1400 cal. AD; ‘Medieval Climate Anomaly’), followed by increasing degradation at Christian Period concurrent with ‘Little Ice Age’ (LIA) (ca. 1487–1530 cal. AD). The Modern Period (1530–1800 cal. AD; LIA) is linked to intensive forest management, related to the naval industry. Afterwards, a progressive reduction is recorded during the Contemporary Age period (‘Industrial Period’) until ‘Recent Warming’. In short, historical severe forest management coupled with increasing aridity since LIA appear to influence A. pinsapo forest current species composition and poor structural diversity. These disturbances might be limiting the resilience of A. pinsapo forests under a climate change scenario. A selected forest management could promote a more complex forest structure.
Keywords: charcoal, endangered species, forest management, fossil pollen record, human-use legacy, past climate, pinsapo fir
Español. El objetivo de este trabajo es realizar un catálogo de la flora, de las comunidades vegetales y el estudio del dinamismo sucesional y del paisaje vegetal de la Sierra de Alcaparaín, que forma parte de una Zona de Especial Conservación (ZEC) situada en la provincia de Málaga (Andalucía, España). El macrobioclima es de tipo mediterráneo con termotipos termo y mesomediterráneo y ombrotipos seco y subhúmedo. El área de estudio está compuesta geológicamente por materiales calizo-dolomíticos, silíceos y peridotíticos, con elevadas pendientes y altitudes entre 400 y 1295 m. y se encuentra en la provincia fitogeográfica Bética (región Mediterránea), con los sectores Rondeño (zonas calizo-dolomíticas), Malacitano-Axarquiense (zonas silíceas) y Bermejense (zonas peridotíticas). El catálogo florístico se compone de 467 taxones, destacando el endemismo local Armeria grajoana y Centaurea carratracensis (VU), endémica del subsector Carratracense (sector Bermejense). Otros taxones interesantes son Linaria clementei (VU), Platycapnos tenuiloba subsp. parallela (VU), Polygala webbiana (única localidad europea), Salvia candelabrum (VU) y Sarcocapnos baetica subsp. baetica (VU). Son remarcables también un total de 7 serpentinófitos destacando Crepis bermejana, Galium boissieranum (VU) y G. viridiflorum (VU). Se han catalogado 28 comunidades y asociaciones vegetales, entre las que destacan como novedades sintaxonómicas la vegetación glerícola vivaz sobre peridotitas (Crambe filiformisCentaureetum carratracensis comb. nova et stat. nov.), los jarales silicícolas rondeños (Lavandulo stoechadisGenistetum equisetiformis ulicetosum baetici subass. nova), los pinares-sabinares mesomediterráneos (Pino halepensis-Juniperetum phoeniceae rhamnetosum myrtifoliae subass. nova) y los encinares edafoxerófilodolomitícolas (Rhamno myrtifoliae-Quercetum rotundifoliae ass. nova). El dinamismo sucesional se expresa en seis series de vegetación. Dos series climatófilas termo y mesomediterráneas de Quercus rotundifolia y de Quercus suber. Tres series edafoxerófilas: termo-mesomediterránea calcícola-dolomitícola de Pinus halepensis y Juniperus phoenicea, mesomediterránea dolomitícola de Quercus rotundifolia y serpentinícola con Juniperus oxycedrus. Existe también una serie edafohigrófila de saucedas (Salix pedicellata). En los frecuentes hábitats rupícolas se describen 3 complejos topogénicos (entre ellos uno con Saxifraga globulifera) y 2 glerícolas (uno sobre kakiritas con Linaria clementei y otro sobre serpentinas con Centaurea carratracensis). En la Sierra existen 8 grandes unidades de paisaje zonopotencial, caracterizados en gran medida por la presencia de Quercus rotundifolia y Q. suber, así como por gimnospermas como Pinus halepensis, Juniperus phoenicea y J. oxycedrus.
English. The main objective of this work is to catalogue the flora and plant communities and to study the successional dynamics of the vegetation and landscape in the Alcaparain mountain range, which is part of a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) located in the province of Malaga (Andalusia, Spain). The macrobioclimate is Mediterranean with thermomediterranean and mesomediterranean thermotypes (vegetation belts) and dry and sub-humid ombrotypes. The study area is geologically composed of limestone-dolomitic materials, siliceous and ultramafic, with steep slopes and altitudes between 400 and 1295 m. and it is placed in the Betica phytogeographical province (Mediterranean region), with Rondeño sector (limestone-dolomite areas) Malacitano-Axarquiense sector (siliceous areas) and Bermejense sector (peridotite-ultramafic areas). The floristic list consists of 467 taxa, highlighting local endemism Armeria grajoana and Centaurea carratracensis (VU), this latter endemic to the Carratracense subsector (Bermejense sector). Other interesting taxa are Linaria clementei (VU), Platycapnostenuiloba subsp. parallela (VU), Polygala webbiana (unique European population), Salvia candelabrum (VU) and Sarcocapnos baetica subsp. baetica (VU). Also noteworthy are a total of 7 serpentinophytes highlighting Crepis bermejana, Galium boissieranum (VU) and G. viridiflorum (VU). 28 communities and plant associations have been catalogued, among which are new syntaxa as the perennial scree vegetation on peridotites (Crambe filiformisCentaureetum carratracensis comb. nova et stat. nov.), the silicicolous shrublands of Rondense subsector (Lavandulo stoechadis-Genistetum equisetiformis ulicetosum baetici subass. nova), the mesomediterranean pine-juniper open forest (Pino halepensis-Juniperetum phoeniceae rhamnetosum myrtifoliae subass. nova) and dolomitic edaphoxerophyllous oak shrublands (Rhamno myrtifoliae-Quercetum rotundifoliae ass. nova). The successional dynamism is expressed in six vegetation series. Two are thermo- and mesomediterranean climatophilous series of Quercus rotundifolia and Quercus suber respectively. Three are edaphoxerophyllous series: thermo-mesomediterranean calcicolous-dolomiticolous with Aleppo pine and Juniperus phoenicea, dolomiticolous mesomediterranean of Quercus rotundifolia and serpentinicolous with Juniperus oxycedrus. There is also one edaphohygrophyllous series of willow (Salix pedicellata). Vegetation of the frequent rocky and cliff habitats are described in three topogenous complexes (including one with Saxifraga globulifera) and two in screes (one on kakirite sands with Linaria clementei and another on serpentine small slopes with Centaurea carratracensis). In the Sierra there are eight large zonopotential units of landscape, mainly characterized by the presence of Quercus rotundifolia (and in a lesser extent, Q. suber) as well as gymnosperms as Aleppo pine, Juniperus phoenicea and J. oxycedrus.
We used Species Distribution Modeling to predict the probability of Iberian pine (Pinus nigra subsp. salzmannii [Dunal] Franco) occurrences in southern Spain in response to environmental variables and to forecast the effects of climate change on their predicted geographical distribution. The ensemble mod-eling approach "biomod2" was used, together with present Iberian pine data, to predict the current potential distribution based on bioclimatic explanatory variables (200 m resolution) and to forecast future suitability by studying three periods (2040, 2070, and 2100), considering the Global Circulation Models BCM2, CNCM3, and ECHAM5, and the regional model EGMAM, for different scenarios (SRAB1, SRA2, SRB1). Model evaluation was performed using Kappa, True Skills Statistic (TSS), and Area Under the Curve (AUC) values. The bio-mod2 approach highlighted the average number of days with a minimum temperature equal to or below 0°C, annual precipitation, and aridity index as the most important variables to describe the P. nigra occurrence probability. Model performances were generally satisfactory and the highest AUC values and high stability of the results were given by GAM and GLM, but MaxEnt and the SRE model were scarcely accurate according to all our statistics. The ensemble Species Distribution Modeling of P. nigra in Andalusia predicted the highest probability of species occurrence in the eastern areas, Sierra de Ca-zorla being the area with the highest occurrence of P. nigra in Andalusia. In the future habitat, the general probability of P. nigra occurrence in Andalusia will decrease widely; the species is expected to lose habitat suitability at moderate altitudes and its occurrence probability will have decreased by nearly 70% on average by 2100, affected by the selected scenario. Populations in Sierra de Cazorla are those most suitable for P. nigra growth, even under the most pessimistic scenarios. It is likely that the natural southern populations of P. nigra will be very sensitive to changes in climate.
Tras la retirada de los hielos glaciares del Cuaternario, los abetos se replegaron hacia el norte o ascendieron en altitud hacia las montañas. Escindido del tronco común del abeto primigenio, Abies pinsapo persiste como especie relicta y endémica de la Serranía de Ronda, y una de las reliquias más meridionales de la aciculisilva. En este trabajo, desarrollamos un ensamblaje de modelos de nicho ecológico del pinsapo calibrados con datos actuales y proyectados hasta el horizonte 2100 según los escenarios previstos por el IPCC (AR5) regionalizados para el área de estudio. Nuestros modelos estimaron una drástica reducción de la distribución potencial de la especie en el área de estudio, incluso la desaparición del espacio ecológico del pinsapo en el peor de los escenarios.
Context The ten most important tree species (five oaks and five conifers) in Southern
Spain were selected for the study. The study area, corresponding to the region of
Andalusia, is located in an interesting position between Central European and North
African climates. The territory also exhibits the most extreme patterns of rainfall in the
Aims To model the potential distribution of the ten species in response to climate
change, in several time periods, including the present and two future 21st century
Methods The potential distributions within the different scenarios were simulated using
a using logistic regression techniques based on a set of 19 climate variables from the
WorldClim 1.4 project. The scenarios were drawn from the RCP 2.6 and 6.0 in the
CCSM4 Global Circulation Model. The resolution of the output maps was 30 arcseconds.
Results The simulation predicted increased distribution areas for Q. ilex and P.
halepensis under the four future scenarios as compared to present. The 8 remaining
taxa sufferred a severe retraction in potential distribution.
Conclusions Global climate change is likely to have a significant impact on forest
dynamics in southern Spain. Only two species would benefit to the detriment of the
others. Logistic Regression is identified as a robust method for carrying out
management and conservation programmes.
The impacts of different emission levels and climate change conditions to landscape-scale natural vegetation could have large repercussions for ecosystem services and environmental health. We forecast the risk-reduction benefits to natural landscapes of lowering business-as-usual greenhouse gas emissions by comparing the extent and spatial patterns of climate exposure to dominant vegetation under current emissions trajectories (Representative Concentration Pathway, RCP8.5) and envisioned Paris Accord target emissions (RCP4.5). This comparison allows us to assess the ecosystem value of reaching targets to keep global temperature warming under 2°C. Using 350,719 km2 of natural lands in California, USA, and the mapped extents of 30 vegetation types, we identify each type's current bioclimatic envelope by the frequency with which it occupies current climate conditions. We then map the trajectory of each pixel's climate under the four climate futures to quantify areas expected to fall within, become marginal to (outside a 95% probability contour), or move beyond their current climate conditions by the end of the 21st century. In California, these four future climates represent temperature increases of 1.9–4.5°C and a −24.8 to +22.9% change in annual precipitation by 2100. From 158,481 to 196,493 km2 (45–56%) of California's natural vegetation is predicted to become highly climatically stressed under current emission levels (RCP8.5) under the drier and wetter global climate models, respectively. Vegetation in three California ecoregions critical to human welfare, southwestern CA, the Great Valley, and the Sierra Nevada Mountains, becomes >50% impacted, including 68% of the lands around Los Angeles and San Diego. However, reducing emissions to RCP4.5 levels reduces statewide climate exposure risk by 86,382–99,726 km2. These projections are conservative baseline estimates because they do not account for amplified drought-related mortality, fires, and beetle outbreaks that have been observed during the current five-year drought. However, these results point to the landscape benefits of emission reductions.
There is an urgent need for large‐scale botanical data to improve our understanding of community assembly, coexistence, biogeography, evolution, and many other fundamental biological processes. Understanding these processes is critical for predicting and handling human‐biodiversity interactions and global change dynamics such as food and energy security, ecosystem services, climate change, and species invasions.
The Botanical Information and Ecology Network (BIEN) database comprises an unprecedented wealth of cleaned and standardised botanical data, containing roughly 81 million occurrence records from c . 375,000 species, c . 915,000 trait observations across 28 traits from c . 93,000 species, and co‐occurrence records from 110,000 ecological plots globally, as well as 100,000 range maps and 100 replicated phylogenies (each containing 81,274 species) for New World species. Here, we describe an r package that provides easy access to these data.
The bien r package allows users to access the multiple types of data in the BIEN database. Functions in this package query the BIEN database by turning user inputs into optimised PostgreSQL functions. Function names follow a convention designed to make it easy to understand what each function does. We have also developed a protocol for providing customised citations and herbarium acknowledgements for data downloaded through the bien r package.
The development of the BIEN database represents a significant achievement in biological data integration, cleaning and standardization. Likewise, the bien r package represents an important tool for open science that makes the BIEN database freely and easily accessible to everyone.
Climate change effects are already apparent in some Southwestern US forests and are expected to intensify in the coming decades, via direct (temperature, precipitation) and indirect (fire, pests, pathogens) stressors. We grouped Southwestern forests into ten major types to assess their climate exposure by 2070 using two global climate models (GCMs) and two emission scenarios representing wetter or drier conditions and current or lowered emission levels. We estimate future climate exposure over forests covering 370,144 km² as the location and proportion of each type projected to experience climate conditions that fall outside 99% of those they currently occupy. By late century, 27–77% is climatically exposed under wetter or drier current emission levels, while lowered emission levels produce 10–50% exposure, respectively. This difference points to the benefits of reducing emissions from the RCP8.5 to the RCP4.5 track, with regard to forest retention. Exposed areas common to all four climate futures include central Arizona and the western slope of the Sierra Nevada. Vulnerability assessments also comprise sensitivity and adaptive capacity, which we scored subjectively by forest type according to the number of key stressors they are sensitive to and the resilience conferred by life history traits of their dominant tree species. Under the 2070 RCP8.5 emissions, four forest types are critically and six are highly vulnerable under the hotter GCM; and eight are highly and two moderately vulnerable under the wetter GCM. We discuss forest management adaptation strategies and the barriers to and co-benefits of such plans.
Species distribution models are feasible methods for projecting theoretical responses of living organisms’ occurrence under several future climate change scenarios. The major interest is focused on trees, which regulate the equilibrium within ecosystems and guarantee the survival of many life forms on the Earth. The repercussions of climatic drivers are expected to pose the strongest threats for the Mediterranean biome, an acknowledged hotspot of biodiversity. Here, we focused on cork oak (Quercus suber L.), a keystone species of many landscapes, sustaining a rich biodiversity, ecological processes and economic incomes. Results of 8 combined ecological modelling techniques and two Global Circulation Models highlight a broad contraction of the species potential range over the twenty-first century, both under intermediate and high emissions scenarios. Coupled northward and upward shifts are predicted, mostly pertaining Iberia and North Africa. The potential areas detected at Levantine will likely undergo disappearance. To exacerbate the impacts of climate change, the future of the ecosystems linked to cork oak remains uncertain, because of the expected implications on the phenotypic plasticity or evolutionary responses. A synergy among niche-based, physiological and eco-genetic investigations is strongly needed in the field of applied research, to improve the assessment of conservation and reforestation actions.
Climate change models predict an increase in aridity in many parts of the world for the twenty-first century, which is likely to be more intense in the Mediterranean basin than in other regions. This study addresses the potential distribution of three Mediterranean pine species (Pinus pinea L., P. halepensis Mill. and P. pinaster Aiton) in southern Spain in response to the forecast increased aridity. Pines constitute a useful source of various types of raw materials, which has led to their increasing introduction around the world. The study was based on ecological niche modelling using multinomial logistic regression, over an area spanning about 8.7 million ha in the south of Spain. In total, 11 explanatory variables were included, drawing on measurements made at high resolution (200 m). Four different periods were studied: the reference period (1961–2000), early twenty-first century (2011–2040), middle twenty-first century (2041–2070) and late twenty-first century (2071–2100). Future time slices were analysed in three different scenarios: B1, A1b and A2 in the CNCM3 general circulation model. The results predict a wider distribution for stone pine, which could expand its potential area in southern Spain. In contrast, Aleppo pine, and especially cluster pine, would reduce their present distribution, with cluster pine occupying higher altitude sites while low altitude populations diminished. The validation model enables accurate maps to be produced, representing powerful tools for afforestation/reforestation programs in the future.
Predictions of an increase in mean temperatures and a widespread reduction in annual rainfall over the next few decades are consistent. Such drastic changes can have a serious, irreversible impact on the current distribution of trees and their ecosystems. Oaks are the most frequent trees in the better preserved areas of the Mediterranean basin; therefore, it is essential to understand potential shifts in their distribution for proper management and protection. The area studied in this work spans approximately 8.7 million hectares. The results obtained at 200 m resolution were subjected to logistic regression over four periods: current period (1961–2000), early twenty-first century (2011–2040), middle twenty-first century (2041–2070) and late twenty-first century (2071–2100). These periods were examined by using the CNCM3 model in an A1b scenario at 200 m resolution for the study area. Four of the five target species exhibited a narrower potential distribution in the twenty-first century. Cork oak and gall oak underwent a drastic potential reduction; on the other hand, Pyrenean oak and Algerian oak might find shelter at higher elevations. By exception, holm oak exhibited the opposite trend and was favoured by projected global warming. This projection is rather adverse for biodiversity and oak-dependent ecosystems. This study allowed an accurate prediction of the potential distribution of five different oak species and is therefore a promising, potentially effective tool for developing high-resolution reforestation programmes.
No official and coherent data on the distribution of the European chestnut exist despite its wide range of distribution and the important economic role it has played in many countries. In 1997, in the framework of the COST action G4 “Multidisciplinary Chestnut Research”, quantitative and qualitative data on chestnut forests were collected, mostly from the National Forest Inventories, in order to provide as sound a picture as possible of this important European resource. A total of 2.25 million hectares of forest dominated by chestnut were recorded, with 1.78 million hectares (79.0 %) cultivated for wood and 0.43 million hectares (19.3 %) for fruit production. The remaining 0.04 million hectares (1.7 %) were classified as irregular structures or without any indication. A further 0.31 million hectares are thought to be mixed forest with chestnut. Three types of chestnut countries can be distinguished : (i) countries with a strong chestnut tradition (e.g. Italy, France, southern Switzerland, Spain, Portugal and Greece), where the chestnut stands are cultivated with intensive and characteristic silvicultural systems (coppices and orchards) ; (ii) countries with only a partially developed chestnut tradition due to the country’s particular geography (e.g. England) or history (e.g. Croatia, Turkey, Georgia) ; (iii) countries where the chestnut only sporadically occurs (e.g. Hungary, Bulgaria, Belgium) or has been recently introduced (e.g. Slovakia, Netherlands). A comparison of the present distribution of traditional silvicultural systems and historical data on chestnut distribution supports the hypothesis that the large-scale chestnut forest plantations are of post-Roman origin. Chestnut cultivation is now at a turning point as the changed needs of society have changed as it has moved away from a rural-based to an industrial and urban-oriented organization. The evolution of the chestnut market in recent decades confirms the potential of this resource for both traditional products and new services and goods related to organic-food and environmentally friendly products.
The effects of climate change on biodiversity are increasingly well documented, and many methods have been developed to assess species' vulnerability to climatic changes, both ongoing and projected in the coming decades. To minimize global biodiversity losses, conservationists need to identify those species that are likely to be most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. In this Review, we summarize different currencies used for assessing species' climate change vulnerability. We describe three main approaches used to derive these currencies (correlative, mechanistic and trait-based), and their associated data requirements, spatial and temporal scales of application and modelling methods. We identify strengths and weaknesses of the approaches and highlight the sources of uncertainty inherent in each method that limit projection reliability. Finally, we provide guidance for conservation practitioners in selecting the most appropriate approach(es) for their planning needs and highlight priority areas for further assessments.
PROLOGUE by Leoncio García-Barrón, Vicente Jurado Doña & Arturo Sousa (Edition coordinators)
Among nowadays’ scientific subjects with more social diffusion are included those related with the climate change and its impacts. Mass media are permanently transferring to the public opinion summaries of reports elaborated by administrative institutions. Sometimes, scientists’ statements are selected in order to support striking headlines. This provokes a social alarm, not always accompanied by calm and comprehensive work of spreading that would generate medium-term environmental responsibility.
The average reader knows there is consensus among climatologists about the process of global warming that, due to human activity, is currently taking place –independently of the climate’s natural variability. Nevertheless, given the complexity of the interactions in the climate system, and the various future scenarios to which the decisions of social behaviour may lead, official predictions are adequately exposed in probabilistic terms. In addition to this, official predictions are presented with a range of possible states in climatic evolution. It is the wrong dogmatic conception of science –generalised in our society- that leads to the perception of the formulated uncertainties like plain ignorance by broad sectors of the population. As a consequence, the goal of producing commitment to adopt personal and collective measures is not achieved.
On the other hand, the scientific bibliography about the subject gathers the results of investigations in different fields but -apart from some official reports- the journals with more international spreading tend to offer a detailed but biased vision, with little integration in the plural aspects related to the climate change. By this, we mean that there is a general spreading about the subject of climate change that frequently lacks explanatory accuracy. There is also specialised scientific spreading, but it is not integrated enough in a multidisciplinary context.
Our aim is to execute a publication that incorpores the virtues of the different means of scientific communication, overcoming its limitations at the same time.
The experience of organising interdepartamental courses of different levels (Ph. D., free configuration credits...) in the University of Seville and in the International University of Andalusia about the effects of climate change raised us the possibility of publishing this book, presenting an overview of the environmental manifestations and consequences of the same. It was at this point that we specified the purpose of this publication: contributing to the environmental training, academically supported on the basis of the last studies about climate. Additionally, it is the authors themselves who present these studies.
We presented the proposal to the Environmental Council of the Andalusian Government, which received it favourably. The initial approach already anticipated a marked multidisciplinary character; because of this, professors from different University departments and professional specialists from institutions related to the topics to be developed, would have to contribute. Moreover, a geographic limitation was established, by means of which the general frame of reference was associated to Andalusia. These premises have marked the criteria of selection that have enabled the edition of this monography.
Andalusia is constituted by a broad and diverse territory. Broadly speaking, it is characterized by a Mediterranean climate, but there is a distinguishable western area with Atlantic influence. This area is subjected to Southwest low pressure systems, with warm, wet winds. The other area is markedly Mediterranean, being its main characteristics rainfall shortage and a higher pluviometric irregularity. The presence of mountain ranges and their orientation also contributes to the configuration of an important internal heterogeneity derived from its relief. The counterpoint of these mountain territories are vast areas of countryside in which human activity has modelled the landscape. All this justifies one of the highest vegetal biodiversities in the continent. The great deal of endemisms that appear are explained as traces of its geological history, sanctuary of the last major climate events, together with its peculiar biogeographic location.
The book is, thus, a miscellany in which recent climate changes in Andalusia form the core. It is not an experts’ report, nor a comprehensive revision on the topic. Instead, it intends to be a first contribution to gather –from a multidisciplinary perspective- the issues surrounding climate change. Consequently, the intention has been to integrate the results of a diverse group of technicians and researchers on the matter from a scientific perspective.
Various authoritative specialists of different domains were contacted, and invited to send their originals. The initial selection included researchers and technicians that we knew had worked in some of the areas included in the publication, with direct or indirect relation to Andalusia. Once the texts were received, two specialists revised them; and after the appropriate observations and modifications had been made, the edition coordinators accepted the collaborations as they are published now.
The range of institutions and University departments to which these collaborators belong allows the reader to see the diversity of scopes brought: Spanish National Institute of Meteorology, Spanish National Research Council (CSIC is the acronym in Spanish), Environmental Council of the Andalusian Government as well as the departments of History, Physical Geography, Applied Physics, Zoology, Plant Biology and Ecology and Landscape Architecture from the Universities of Almeria, Barcelona, Granada, Seville and Ankara.
It is obvious that there not appear all the researchers who could have enriched the content of this monograph with their knowledge. Despite this, we can assert that, according to our criterion, the result obtained by the contributions of the different authors is very relevant. Not only because they come from qualified representatives of different disciplines, but also because of the elevated scientific level of each one of the chapters. The combination of all of them -from complementary perspectives- produces an accumulative affection that, in our opinion, makes this printed work an important contribution to the scientific knowledge of environmental climatology in Spain. It is not common to find works like the one we present. Therefore, we suggest to researchers from other autonomous regions to consider the possibility of editing similar publications to achieve a general vision of the climate effects regionalised in the different geographic areas.
Three modules have been established in the distribution of the subject matters:
- Temporal climate variability
In order to link the climate change with the incidence of the antropic activity, previous knowledge about the climate temporal variability in geologic and historic epochs is necessary. Apart from this, it would be necessary to embody results from studies about the reported evolution of the instrumental records in Andalusian observatories. The first report of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, in 1990, about the climate change detection indicated that we can examine the natural variability of the climate and look for traces of possible changes in the temporal series.
- Environmental impacts
The environmental consequences of climate change can be analysed from different fields: aquatic and land ecosystems, flora, fauna, hydric resources and wetlands, hydrogeology or health, among others. This central module constitutes an interconnected joint of chapters about predictable environmental impacts. The exposition of these effects triggered by antropic activity –the alteration of the components of the climate system in particular- is also based on impacts that have already been detected.
- Mitigation and adaptation
This third module was conceptualised with a more technical character in the sense that it comprehends, apart from reports, the measures and proposals catered for by agencies and administrations with reference to climate change. We consider that, basing us on the scenarios and climate model predictions for the 21st century, it is suitable that institutional responsibles pronounce themselves by exposing, among other issues, the Spanish implication in the Kyoto Protocol, Andalusian Information Subsystem for environmental Climatology, the Andalusian strategy for climate change, the role of forests as CO2 drains... And all this should be framed within an environmental education plan.
We wish to express our sincere gratitude to each one of the authors for their willingness to dedicate time and knowledge to contribute to this group work, with the confidence that the observation of the results that we present now be satisfactory for you –and a compensation for previous efforts.
We are conscious that it is not possible to cover all the topics connected to global change in a single volume of these characteristics. Some subjects have been left out, like those referred to climate change and sustainability. Sustainable development presents such a variety of scopes from different fields that its incorporation could divert too much from the initial approach, to the detriment of environmental impacts. Aspects like economic consequences in Andalusia (tourism, public works...), alternative models for the production of energy, and the optimization in the use of energetic resources (transport, bioclimatic arquitecture), pollution and industrial systems, etc. Although we grant these matters high importance, we have not developed them. Maybe we will be able to approach these aspects and similar ones, related in medium or long-term to the effects of social behaviour on global change.
Hence, our intention has been to expose a selected series of works in order to contribute, from a multidisciplinary perspective, to offer a present and scientific vision of the implications of climate change and its environmental repercussions in Andalusia. It is the reader now who has to judge whether the selection of topics that constitute this publication are appropriate, as a whole, for the proposed objectives. Checking that we have accomplished the goal of spreading multidisciplinary knowledge will be our satisfaction. We have also provided a means to profound in relevant and current issues for the environmental training from scientific methodologies.
We manifest our gratitude to the Department of the Environment of the Junta de Andalusia/ Environmental Council of the Andalusian Government, specially to the General Direction of Environmental Education for welcoming the proposal and for their support in the edition of this book.
The largest number of Iberian endemic plant species and indeed one of the largest in Europe is found in the Baetic Mountains in the south of Europe (Spain), with mountain peaks up to 1,800 m. Our aim is to analyze the endemic plants and biogeographic patterns as a base for establishing priority areas for conservation and management. We present the complete floristic list of the 237 narrow endemics that inhabit these mountain regions. Asteraceae, Brassicaceae, Poaceae and Papilionaceae are families with the largest number of endemic species. The comparative analysis shows that the Baetic mountains are an important centre of endemism in the Mediterranean basin with a present degree of endemism of 28, 18%. Biogeographic patterns are first identified according to the development of the endemic plants on calcareous soils or siliceous soils, and next the phytogeographic subunits identified by different levels of endemism diversity. The abundance of endemic species in the Baetic mountains is explained by the geographical isolation together with its natural history.
Reforestation projects are considered key climate change mitigation strategies, especially while considering native tree species as Ceratonia siliqua. The aims of this study were to evaluate the seed germination responses of three Tunisian accessions of Ceratonia siliqua, (Ichkeul (A1), Melloulech (A2), and Matmata (A3)), to temperature, water and salt stresses and their combination on germination aptitude. To overcome integumentary inhibition, we tested the different physical and chemical pre-treatments. Then, we subjected the seeds to different concentrations of NaCl and PEG (0 to -2 MPa), at different temperatures (from 10 to 35 °C). Results showed that the best pretreatment is soaking the seeds with 98% sulfuric acid for 20 minutes at 24 °C. The highest germination rate was observed at a temperature of 20 °C for A1 and 25 °C for A2 and A3. Using the hydrothermal time model, we found that the base water potential (Ψb), showed lower values in optimal range temperature (-2,19 MPa). All Ceratonia siliqua accessions showed a greater sensitivity to drought stress in germination and root growth in comparison with salt stress. The Ichkeul accession showed faster germination and better tolerance to stress. In conclusion, Ceratonia siliqua is thus recommended for restoration programs in arid and semi-arid ecosystems.
Climate change is expected to greatly alter and modify the ecological conditions of plant growth and distribution, particularly in the Mediterranean Basin, considered as one of the most vulnerable zone to global warming in the world. In this chapter, we look at the biogeography of the olive tree, an emblematic species of the Mediterranean Basin, represented in Morocco by two wild subspecies: Olea europaea subsp. europaea var. sylvestris, the ancestor of all the olive varieties and widely distributed in the country, and Olea e. subsp. maroccana, endemic in a restricted southwestern area. We hypothesis, within the context of future warming, an increase of O. e. subsp. e. var. sylvestris distribution area is expected, while for O. e. subsp. maroccana, an alteration of its distribution is predicted, increasing seriously the risk of extinction. In order to assess the current and future potential geographic distribution of the two wild olive species in Morocco, a species distribution based-modelling was performed to understand the relationships between species distributions and climatic factors, on the basis of field data and 19 climatic variables. Two representative concentration pathways, RCP4.5 and RCP8.5, were used to forecast the future distribution of the two wild olive subspecies in 2050 and 2070. To avoid multicollinearity, the highly correlated climatic variables (r > 0.9, Pearson correlation coefficient) were deleted from the independent variables list. The Jackknife test was carried out to evaluate the relevance of the climatic variables for predictive modeling. The maximum entropy model for the current distribution of both species provides a satisfactory result, with a high value of the Area Under Curve equal to 0.980 (±0.001) for Olea europaea subsp. europaea var. sylvestris and equal to 0.997 (±0.001) for Olea europaea subsp. maroccana. Jackknife test indicates that precipitation and temperature variables play a significance role in wild olive species biogeographical dynamics in Morocco. The study results confirm our hypothesis of an expansion of O. e. subsp. e. var. sylvestris suitable area and the threatened aspect of Olea e. subsp. maroccana under climate change scenarios. The approach used in this study is promising to predict the potential distribution of wild olive species, and can be an effective tool to support conservation and restoration programs.
Forests provide a wide range of provisioning, regulating and cultural services of great value to societies across the Mediterranean basin. In this study, we reviewed the scientific literature of the last 30 years to quantify the magnitude of projected changes in ecosystem services provision by Mediterranean forests under IPCC climate change scenarios. We classified the scenarios according to the temperature threshold of 2℃ set by the Paris Agreement (below or above). The review of 78 studies shows that climate change will lead to a general reduction in the provision of regulating services (e.g. carbon storage, regulation of freshwater quantity and quality) and a general increase in the number of fires, burnt areas and generally, an increase in climate-related forest hazards (median + 62% by 2100). Studies using scenarios above the 2℃ threshold projected significantly more negative changes in regulating services than studies using scenarios below this threshold. Main projected trend changes on material services (e.g. wood products), were less clear and depended on (i) whether or not the studies considered the interaction between the rise in temperatures and other drivers (e.g. forest management, CO 2 fertilization) and (ii) differences in productivity responses across the tree species evaluated. Overall, the reviewed studies projected significant reductions in range extent and habitat suitability for the most drought-sensitive forest species (e.g. −88% Fagus sylvatica), while the amount of habitat available for more drought-tolerant species will remain stable or increase; however, the magnitude of projected change for these more xeric species was limited when high-end extreme climatic scenarios were considered (above Paris Agreement). Our review highlights the benefits that climate change mitigation (to keep global mean temperature increase <2℃) can bring in terms of service provision and conservation of Mediterranean forests.
The many Gondwanic vegetation types found across the extensive latitudes and elevation gradients of South America's southern cone contribute to Chile's global biodiversity hotspot ranking. Species loss in global biodiversity hotspots is an ongoing climate change concern and land managers need spatially explicit climate risk maps to adapt conservation strategies to climate change in these areas. We modeled future climate risk for Chile's terrestrial vegetation using a high-resolution vegetation map and tested the relationship to climate risk for each type's latitudinal and elevation range. We found that 43.6% of all vegetation has high climate risk in Global Circulation Models (GCMs) under a high emissions scenario (RCP8.5). All forest types in the country, including Southern Beech (Nothofagus sp.), Alerce (Fitzroya cupressoides), Araucaria (Araucaria araucana), and Sclerophyllous, as well as the Valdivian rainforest, Altiplanic Steppes, and Salares, face high levels of climate risk. Tests for trends in risk across elevation and latitude showed that exposure for all types increased with elevation based on the MIROC5 GCM, and decreased with latitude based on the Had2GEM-ES GCM. Our results suggest that vegetation types with smaller latitudinal ranges typically have higher levels of climate risk, but a type's elevation range is not significantly correlated with risk of exposure. We identified climatically stable areas which could act as vegetation refugia in Patagonia, the central Andes mountains between latitudes 27.5°S and 32.5°S, and some coastal areas. Conservation strategies in Chile should include the protection of climatically stable areas to safeguard current Gondwanic biodiversity and active habitat restoration in climatically exposed areas to facilitate vegetation shifts.
Climate change presents a substantial threat to species unable to keep pace via migration or adaptation. In-situ climate refugia, areas currently occupied by a species and that remain suitable in the future, will be vital for species with dispersal limitations. Ex-situ refugia, areas beyond species' current ranges that remain suitable, may facilitate range shifts or provide options for translocation. Assessing both refugia is a conservation priority. Here, we identify refugia for 319 species threatened in New South Wales, using four plausible scenarios describing futures that are Warmer/Wetter, Warmer/Drier, Hotter/Wetter and Hotter/Little Precipitation change, relative to the present. Using Maxent, we identify (a) in-situ refugia for each species under each scenario; (b) regions of consensus-areas projected as in-situ refugia across all scenarios; (c) hotspots of in-situ refugia (regions suitable for > 1 species); and (d) regions of consensus for ex-situ refugia. Species were categorised based on the extent of in-and ex-situ refugia. By 2070, refugia will likely be broadest, and narrowest, under the Warmer/Wetter and Hotter/Wetter scenarios, respectively. East coast regions currently suitable for multiple species are unlikely to remain as hotspots. Most species (65%) are projected to have limited regions of consensus for either refugia. Translocation should be explored for species with little-to-no in-situ refugia, but for which ex-situ refugia exist. Management of existing populations will be critical for species with in-situ refugia but limited ex-situ. We highlight how management decisions based on agreement across climate scenarios can be made, irrespective of uncertainty about the magnitude of climate change.
Assess climatic risk to vegetation types associated with tropical and temperate ecosystems based on exposure analysis, which models future risk as a function of deviation from current climate variable distributions.
Oaxaca State, Mexico.
Broadly defined vegetation types used in state‐ and national‐level vegetation classification systems. These types can be grouped into series representing dry‐to‐wet conditions for tropical and temperate vegetation.
We used climate exposure analysis to compare current and future climate parameters for the major vegetation types of Oaxaca. This technique integrates a recent vegetation map with historical climate data (1981–2010) to produce a baseline climate layer that is compared to climate projections made with five different global circulation models for near‐future (2015–2039) and end‐century (2075–2099) periods using two emissions scenarios (RCP 4.5 and 8.5). We classified the frequency distribution of the baseline climate into five exposure classes where the closer values are to mean climate conditions, the lower the exposure. Future exposure was estimated by classifying the vegetation pixels into the same exposure classes, now based on future climate values. Increased exposure risk was assessed based on the fraction of pixels that moved into higher exposure classes from one period to another.
Results and main conclusions
Our analysis showed four general trends: (a) the higher, current track emissions scenario produced much larger end‐century climate exposure; (b) for the tropical vegetation series, tropical evergreen forests are projected as most exposed by end‐century; (c) for the temperate vegetation series the matorral‐shrubland and conifer forests are the most impacted; and (d) the five GCMs considered showed some convergence in their end‐century climate exposure predictions, with coastal and low‐elevation areas of the State projected to experience the greatest exposure, and the interior mountain slopes and central region projected to experience the least exposure and be the most climatically stable.
Future climates are projected to be highly novel relative to recent climates. Climate novelty challenges models that correlate ecological patterns to climate variables and then use these relationships to forecast ecological responses to future climate change. Here, we quantify the magnitude and ecological significance of future climate novelty by comparing it to novel climates over the past 21,000 years in North America. We then use relationships between model performance and climate novelty derived from the fossil pollen record from eastern North America to estimate the expected decrease in predictive skill of ecological forecasting models as future climate novelty increases. We show that, in the high emissions scenario (RCP8.5) and by late 21st century, future climate novelty is similar to or higher than peak levels of climate novelty over the last 21,000 years. The accuracy of ecological forecasting models is projected to decline steadily over the coming decades in response to increasing climate novelty, though models that incorporate co‐occurrences among species may retain somewhat higher predictive skill. In addition to quantifying future climate novelty in the context of late Quaternary climate change, this work underscores the challenges of making reliable forecasts to an increasingly novel future, while highlighting the need to assess potential avenues for improvement, such as increased reliance on geological analogues for future novel climates and improving existing models by pooling data through time and incorporating assemblage‐level information.
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Intensive afforestation programmes were developed in Spain during the end of the 20 th century and the beginning of the 21st, under the European Economic Community‘s (EEC) agricultural reforestation directives. However, these afforestations were performed without considering future climate change scenarios and now these areas have to cope with more-severe climatic conditions. We used ensemble Species Distribution Models (SDMs) to study the future stability of cork oak (Quercus suber L.) plantations established in Andalusia between 1993 and 2000. We used presence/absence data from the national forest inventory and RED SEDA Network, together with survival rate data from 2008 for cork oak afforestations planted between 1993 and 2000, to forecast the potential optimal distribution of cork oak and to model the distribution of the survival rate of cork oak afforestations. We evaluated the change over time of the volume overlap of the environmental space between the potential distribution and the afforestations. The ensemble modelling approach gave highly-accurate results for the current potential distribution of cork oak in Andalusia (AUC = 0.943, TSS = 0.718, Kappa = 0.718) and moderately-accurate estimations of the distribution of the survival rate of cork oak afforestations in Andalusia (RMSE = 0.290). We found that 10% of the cork oak afforestations planted between 1993 and 2000 were established in the optimal area of occurrence of cork oak (probability of presence above 70%) and presented an acceptable survival rate (>50%); also, the volume of the environmental space defined by cork oak afforestation decreased over time. We have confirmed the potential of SDMs to predict the distribution of the survival rate of cork oak afforestations and to assess their future stability. In the worst scenario, 3% of the cork oak afforestations would withstand climate change.
Since 2009, a severe decline leading to mortality has been observed affecting nearly 5 ha of a wild olive woodland of high ecological value in Seville, southern Spain. Phytophthora cryptogea and P. megasperma were consistently isolated from roots and rhizosphere of trees with symptoms sampled in 2009, 2011 and 2013. The isolates were identified on the basis of colony and reproductive structure morphology as well as temperature–growth relationships, and identification was further corroborated by their ITS and β-tubulin sequences. Koch's postulates were demonstrated for both species on 1-year-old wild olives. Pathogenicity tests showed that both Phytophthora spp. are highly aggressive pathogens, although temperature–growth requirements for each species were distinct. As a consequence, the two species may be active in different seasons and their epidemiology may be differently influenced by global climate change, and they may show their active periods in different climatic scenarios. The climate change models for the Mediterranean Basin forecast a global temperature increase that favours the more thermophilic P. cryptogea. The high susceptibility to phytophthora root rot should not be disregarded in olive breeding programmes where wild olive is used as a source of resistance to verticillium wilt. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Climate and topography have both strong effects on forest water and carbon cycles. However, little is known about their combined effects on the long-term water use and productivity of forests that have different water-use strategies. Here, we used structural equation modelling (SEM) to test direct and indirect influences of climate and topography on the long-term (mean over 2000–2014) evapotranspiration (ET) and gross ecosystem productivity (GEP), as assessed from satellite-based models, across two major co-occurring Mediterranean forest types with different water-use strategies (oak woodlands and pine forests). The estimated GEP and ET were higher by c. 6% and 15%, respectively, in the oak woodlands (Quercus calliprinos) than in pine forests (Pinus halepensis). As a result, the water use efficiency was higher in the pine forests (by 9%), consistent with P. halepensis conservative behaviour. Using the SEM, we found that the mean annual surface skin temperatures had the largest influence on the productivity and ET, with a similar net adverse effect across both forest types. In contrast, the mean annual precipitation was not related to GEP across both forest types but positively affected the ET in the oak woodlands. Slope and aspect had both significant but secondary influence on the forests fluxes, with higher GEP and ET found on the steeper slopes across the oak woodlands and higher ET found on the steeper slopes across the pine forests, associated with north-facing aspects. Applying the SEMs for the pine and oak forests, we predicted reductions of 16% and 31% in the productivity of both forests for projected increases in temperatures of 1 °C and 2 °C, respectively. Our results suggest that projected warming may have a strong impact on the productivity of Mediterranean forests, severely decreasing the CO2 uptake of the trees, independent of their water-use strategy.
This paper reviews research traditions of vulnerability to environmental change and the challenges for present vulnerability research in integrating with the domains of resilience and adaptation. Vulnerability is the state of susceptibility to harm from exposure to stresses associated with environmental and social change and from the absence of capacity to adapt. Antecedent traditions include theories of vulnerability as entitlement failure and theories of hazard. Each of these areas has contributed to present formulations of vulnerability to environmental change as a characteristic of social-ecological systems linked to resilience. Research on vulnerability to the impacts of climate change spans all the antecedent and successor traditions. The challenges for vulnerability research are to develop robust and credible measures, to incorporate diverse methods that include perceptions of risk and vulnerability, and to incorporate governance research on the mechanisms that mediate vulnerability and promote adaptive action and resilience. These challenges are common to the domains of vulnerability, adaptation and resilience and form common ground for consilience and integration.
Forest decline and increasing tree mortality are of global concern and the identification of the causes is necessary to develop preventive measures. Global warming is an emerging factor responsible for the increasing tree mortality in drought-prone ecosystems. In the southwestern Iberian Peninsula, Mediterranean holm oak open woodlands currently undergo large-scale population-level tree die-off. In this region, temperature and aridity have increased during recent decades, but the possible role of climate change in the current oak mortality has not been investigated.