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Effects of Climate Change on Terrestrial Ecosystems

Team NAMES - Science 10H Final - Jan. 24th 2014

Nathan Schlageter

on 17 May 2017

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Transcript of Effects of Climate Change on Terrestrial Ecosystems

Effects of Climate Change on Terrestrial Ecosystems
Tropical Rainforest
Temperate Deciduous Forest
Largest terrestrial biome
Subarctic climate
Largely coniferous (spruce, pine, etc.)
Low biological diversity
30% of Earth's surface is affected by drought as of 2013 because of:
poor irrigation
changes include:
higher summer temperatures
increased rates of evaporation
less summer rain
decreased soil moisture
increase in frequency/severity of drought
resulting in:
Dry, cold and windy
Snow-covered majority of the year
Short growing seasons
Low biotic diversity
Permanantly frozen subsoil
Upper layer melts in summer, creating bogs and lakes
Holds up to 14% of the Earth's carbon; also contains methane
Climate Change's Effect on the Tundra
Fall frost comes later; allows more plants to grow during summer, producing more carbon
Vegetation adapted to grow in tundra climate taken over by southern species
Snow melts with increased global temperature
Dark trees begin to cover tundra:
Absorbs heat rather than reflects
decrease in
Occurs in equatorial zone between the Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn
High levels of rainfall
High average temperatures
High levels of biodiversity
Carbon sink
Tipping points
ecological tipping point
spread of fireprone bush and savanna
climatic tipping point
rainfall inhibited on a regional scale
trees and shrubs
increase in
Dry, fluctuating temp. and barren
Very little precipitaion
Short growing season
Low biotic diversity
Desert Predictions:
process of fertile land becoming desert, typically a result of drought, deforestation, or inappropriate agriculture
Dry-Wet Seasons
Southern Hemisphere
What does this mean for the future of the Tundra?
Native shrubs become woody trees
Lush vegetation may be able to thrive by 2050
Possibility of disapppearance
20% of world's land surface
Open, Windy
Northern Hemisphere
40% of world's
land surface
Covers 30% of total land area on Earth
Location: Temperate Zone, between coniferous and tropical forest climates
Countries include eastern USA, Canada, Europe, China & Japan
Characterized by:
Trees lose leaves each year (ex. oak, maple, elm)
Broadleafed plantation
Affected by four seasons
Fertile soil
Varies in species in areas where winter is mild
One of three biomes that covers Saskatchewan
Impacts of Climate Change on Temperate Deciduous Forest
Makes up 29% of worlds forest cover
Arctic Carbon Cycle
What does this mean for the future of Grasslands?
Possibility of turning into deserts/ expanding deserts
Decrease in species diversity and populations
Will replace forest ecosystems due to lack of precipitation

Greatest temperature changes on Earth
Replaced by other biomes
Change in forest will accelerate warming
Native species driven out
Pests thrive
Temperature Increase
Increased evaporation rate
Lower amount of rainfall
Tree growth affected by less available water
Tree productivity rate lowers to the South, rises in North
Climate Change
Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide
Enables Fertilizer Effect (beneficial fertilization on plants)
Efficient use of water
Increased photosynthesis rates = biomass + ogygen
Risk of forest fire : dry shrubs & trees add fuel to fire
Increased rate of insect production leads to...
Risk of prevalent pathogens (bacterium, viruses, disease)
Grassland/Savannah as a result of reoccuring droughts
On the Positive Side
Forest Fires & Clear Cutting
What does this mean for the future of the Rainforest?
Reduced biodiversity
Higher levels of CO2
Warmer and drier environment for the region
Possiblility of disappearance and replacement by caatinga/savanna eccosystem
Forest fires becoming more frequent
Releases carbon stored in vegetation
Clearcutting prevents forest fires but causes other issues
What does this mean for the future of the Taiga?
Species unable to adapt go exctinct
Continuely shift farther north until eventual disappearence
Could be overtaken by temperate forests/grasslands
Melting permafrost releases more CO2 and methane than is absorbed
Tundra becoming major carbon contributer
What does this mean for the future of the Desert?
Possibility of growth as it takes over more ecosystems
Reduced biodiversity or life altogether
Hotter, dryer desert climates
One of three biomes that covers Saskatchewan
One of three biomes that covers Saskatchewan
Treeless regions found in Arctic and on mountaintops
increasing incidents of droughts
dryer, causing higher wildfire frequency
increased temperatures
melting snow and ice
changing precipitation patterns
increased extreme weather
displacement of species
What does this mean for the future of Temperate Deciduous Forest?
Original region of temperate deciduous forest permanently turned to grassland or savanna
Diseased trees and other plants
Less biodiversity if animals and plants cannot adapt
Invasion of northern ecosystems - Taiga, Tundra

50-80% of moisture remains inside ecosystem's water cycle
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