We modelled the combined effects of past and expected future changes in climate and nitrogen deposition on tree carbon sequestration by European forests for the period 1900-2050. Two scenarios for deposition (current legislation and maximum technically feasible reductions) and two climate scenarios (no change and SRES A1 scenario) were used. Furthermore, the possible limitation of forest growth by calcium, magnesium, potassium and phosphorus is investigated. The area and age structure of the forests was assumed to stay constant to observations during the period 1970-1990. Under these assumptions, the simulations show that the change in forest growth and carbon sequestration in the past is dominated by changes in nitrogen deposition, while climate change is the major driver for future carbon sequestration. However, its impact is reduced by nitrogen availability. Furthermore, limitations in base cations, especially magnesium, and in phosphorus may significantly affect predicted growth in the future.
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