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 482757
Title Forest resilience and tipping points at different spatio-temporal scales: approaches and challenges
Author(s) Reyer, C.P.O.; Brouwers, N.; Rammig, A.; Brook, B.W.; Holmgren, M.; Villela, D.M.
Source Journal of Ecology 103 (2015)1. - ISSN 0022-0477 - p. 5 - 15.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1365-2745.12337
Department(s) Resource Ecology
PE&RC
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2015
Keyword(s) global vegetation model - climate-change impacts - amazon rain-forest - carbon-dioxide - elevated co2 - tree mortality - boreal forest - regime shifts - primary productivity - critical transitions
Abstract 1. Anthropogenic global change compromises forest resilience, with profound impacts to ecosystem functions and services. This synthesis paper reflects on the current understanding of forest resilience and potential tipping points under environmental change and explores challenges to assessing responses using experiments, observations and models. 2. Forests are changing over a wide range of spatio-temporal scales, but it is often unclear whether these changes reduce resilience or represent a tipping point. Tipping points may arise from interactions across scales, as processes such as climate change, land-use change, invasive species or deforestation gradually erode resilience and increase vulnerability to extreme events. Studies covering interactions across different spatio-temporal scales are needed to further our understanding. 3. Combinations of experiments, observations and process-based models could improve our ability to project forest resilience and tipping points under global change. We discuss uncertainties in changing CO2 concentration and quantifying tree mortality as examples. 4. Synthesis. As forests change at various scales, it is increasingly important to understand whether and how such changes lead to reduced resilience and potential tipping points. Understanding the mechanisms underlying forest resilience and tipping points would help in assessing risks to ecosystems and presents opportunities for ecosystem restoration and sustainable forest management.
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