Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 366414
Title Long-term effects of climate change on vegetation and carbon dynamics in peat bogs
Author(s) Heijmans, M.M.P.D.; Mauquoy, D.; Geel, B. van; Berendse, F.
Source Journal of Vegetation Science 19 (2008)3. - ISSN 1100-9233 - p. 307 - 320.
DOI https://doi.org/10.3170/2008-8-18368
Department(s) Nature Conservation and Plant Ecology
PE&RC
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2008
Keyword(s) increased nitrogen deposition - increased n deposition - vulgaris l hull - vascular plants - sphagnum bogs - british-isles - northern peatlands - biological flora - boreal peatlands - solar-activity
Abstract Questions: What are the long-term effects of climate change on the plant species composition and carbon sequestration in peat bogs?Methods: We developed a bog ecosystem model that includes vegetation, carbon, nitrogen and water dynamics. Two groups of vascular plant species and three groups of Sphagnum species compete with each other for light and nitrogen. The model was tested by comparing the outcome with long-term historic vegetation changes in peat cores from Denmark and England. A climate scenario was used to analyse the future effects of atmospheric CO2, temperature and precipitation.Results: The main changes in the species composition since 1766 were simulated by the model. Simulations for a future warmer, and slightly wetter, climate with doubling CO2 concentration suggest that little will change in species composition, due to the contrasting effects of increasing temperatures (favouring vascular plants) and CO2 (favouring Sphagnum). Further analysis of the effects of temperature showed that simulated carbon sequestration is negatively related to vascular plant expansion. Model results show that increasing temperatures may still increase carbon accumulation at cool, low N deposition sites, but decrease carbon accumulation at high N deposition sites.Conclusions: Our results show that the effects of temperature, precipitation, N-deposition and atmospheric CO2 are not straightforward, but interactions between these components of global change exist. These interactions are the result of changes in vegetation composition. When analysing long-term effects of global change, vegetation changes should be taken into account and predictions should not be based on temperature increase alone.
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