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Gewählte Publikation:

Adams, MA; Buckley, TN; Binkley, D; Neumann, M; Turnbull, TL.
(2021): CO2, nitrogen deposition and a discontinuous climate response drive water use efficiency in global forests
NAT COMMUN. 2021; 12(1), 5194 FullText FullText_BOKU

Reduced stomatal conductance is a common plant response to rising atmospheric CO2 and increases water use efficiency (W). At the leaf-scale, W depends on water and nitrogen availability in addition to atmospheric CO2. In hydroclimate models W is a key driver of rainfall, droughts, and streamflow extremes. We used global climate data to derive Aridity Indices (AI) for forests over the period 1965-2015 and synthesised those with data for nitrogen deposition and W derived from stable isotopes in tree rings. AI and atmospheric CO2 account for most of the variance in W of trees across the globe, while cumulative nitrogen deposition has a significant effect only in regions without strong legacies of atmospheric pollution. The relation of aridity and W displays a clear discontinuity. W and AI are strongly related below a threshold value of AI approximate to 1 but are not related where AI > 1. Tree ring data emphasise that effective demarcation of water-limited from non-water-limited behaviour of stomata is critical to improving hydrological models that operate at regional to global scales. Water use efficiency is a key measure of plant responses to climate change. Here, the authors investigate its control by CO2, nitrogen deposition, and water availability using a global tree-ring dataset. They find an aridity threshold and quantify changes in control over the past 50 years.
Autor*innen der BOKU Wien:
Neumann Mathias
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