Earth Science News  





. Climate Change Threatens Siberian Forests

The scientists observed 18 years of satellite images of the region, and estimated the timing of the onset and end of the growing season, when the snow has melted and the plants take up carbon from the air during plant growth. From 1982 to 1999 almost all Siberian ecosystems showed an earlier onset of spring.
by Staff Writers
Leicester UK (SPX) Aug 01, 2007
In Central Siberia alone, fires have destroyed 38 000 km2 in the extreme fire year of 2003. In that year the smoke plumes were so huge that they caused air pollution as far as in the United States. An international team of scientists believes that Siberian fires are influenced by climate change. The study was led by the Professor Heiko Balzter of the Department of Geography at the University of Leicester.

Professor Balzter said "Last century a typical forest in Siberia had about 100 years after a fire to recover before it burned again. But new observations by Russian scientist Dr Kharuk have shown that fire now returns more frequently, about every 65 years. At the same time annual temperatures in Siberia have risen by almost two degrees Celsius, about twice as fast as the global average. And since 1990 the warming of Siberia has become even faster than before."

Global warming leads to warmer springs and causes plants to green up earlier. This has already been observed for the UK. Over Russia the scientists found similar trends towards an earlier spring.

The scientists observed 18 years of satellite images of the region, and estimated the timing of the onset and end of the growing season, when the snow has melted and the plants take up carbon from the air during plant growth. From 1982 to 1999 almost all Siberian ecosystems showed an earlier onset of spring. The strongest advance of spring was observed in Urban areas (0.74 days advance per year), Deciduous Broadleaf Forest (0.46 d/a), Forest - Cropland complexes (0.62 d/a), Humid grasslands (0.35 d/a) and Cropland - Grassland complexes (0.45 d/a).

"Central Siberia has a more continental climate. The changes in the timing of spring and also in fire occurrence are linked to temperature changes and a climate pattern that scientists call the Arctic Oscillation" said Professor Balzter. "Towards the East Siberian coast the Pacific plays a more important role, and the El Nino phenomenon together with low rainfall determines what happens to the forest".

In the continental parts of Central Siberia the Arctic Oscillation and corresponding heat waves are thought to control the fire regime, while in East Siberia El Nino conditions and droughts are thought to play a major role.

"Planet Earth is always more complicated than you think", says Professor Balzter, "The lengthening of the growing season that has been described in the scientific literature is a non-linear phenomenon. It is influenced by feedbacks between the atmosphere and the forest, which responds to rising greenhouse gas levels and higher temperatures."

Community
Email This Article
Comment On This Article

Related Links
University of Leicester
Climate Science News - Modeling, Mitigation Adaptation




Tempur-Pedic Mattress Comparison

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News
UN Chief Urges New Climate Change Deal By 2009
United Nations (AFP) Jul 31, 2007
UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday appealed to all countries to do their utmost to seal a new climate change deal by 2009 and have it in force by the time the Kyoto protocol expires in 2012. Addressing an informal General Assembly debate on the impact of climate change, Ban said: "All countries must do what they can to reach agreement by 2009, and to have it in force by the expiry of the current Kyoto protocol commitment period in 2012. We need a comprehensive agreement under the UNFCCC process that tackles climate change on all fronts, including adaptation, mitigation, clean technologies, deforestation and resource mobilization," he added.

.
Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
  



  • Philippine Volcano Erupts As Nation Prays For Drought Breaking Rain
  • More Rains Forecast As England And Wales See Wettest Months Since 1766
  • Floods Leave England Awash As Fires Burn Across Continental Europe
  • More Flooding As England Battles Power Cuts And Water Shortages

  • Climate Change Threatens Siberian Forests
  • UN Chief Urges New Climate Change Deal By 2009
  • Climate Change Sucks Water From China's Two Longest Rivers
  • Drip, Drip Of Global Warming Spells Change In Northern Russia

  • Mapping Mountains From Space With GOCE
  • ESA Mission Highlighted At Remote Sensing Conference
  • Third Sino-Brazilian EO Satellite To Be Launched By October
  • Ball Aerospace Prepares To Ship WorldView I

  • FPL Energy Announces Expanded Growth Plan For Wind Business
  • EDF Signs Framework Agreement To Operate Four Wind Farms In US
  • Titan Energy Development Delivers Sentry 5000 Mobile Utility System To NextEnergy
  • Nanotechnology Helps Scientists Make Bendy Sensors For Hydrogen Vehicles

  • Treat HIV Babies Early
  • Revealing The Global Threat Of Bird Flu
  • Reviving The HIV Vaccine Hunt
  • China To Make Cuban Dengue Mosquito Killer

  • Rare Example Of Darwinism Seen In Action
  • Waters Off Washington State Only Second Place In World Where Glass Sponge Reefs Found
  • The Cambrian's Many Forms
  • Surprising New Species Of Light-Harvesting Bacterium Discovered In Yellowstone

  • Particle Emissions From Laser Printers Might Pose Health Concern
  • New Aerogels Could Clean Contaminated Water And Purify Hydrogen For Fuel Cells
  • China To Make It Harder For Heavy Polluters To Borrow Money
  • Quebec's Famous Lakes Teeming With Blue-Green Algae

  • Australian School Makes Sunglasses Compulsory For Pupils
  • New Clue Into How Diet And Exercise Enhance Longevity
  • New Research Proves Single Origin Of Humans In Africa
  • Energy Efficiency Reason For Evolution Of Upright Walking

  • The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2007 - SpaceDaily.AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement