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    Extreme fire events are related to previous-year surface moisture conditions in permafrost-underlain larch forests of Siberia
    (Bristol : IOP Publishing, 2012) Forkel, Matthias; Thonicke, Kirsten; Beer, Christian; Cramer, Wolfgang; Bartalev, Sergey; Schmullius, Christiane
    Wildfires are a natural and important element in the functioning of boreal forests. However, in some years, fires with extreme spread and severity occur. Such severe fires can degrade the forest, affect human values, emit huge amounts of carbon and aerosols and alter the land surface albedo. Usually, wind, slope and dry air conditions have been recognized as factors determining fire spread. Here we identify surface moisture as an additional important driving factor for the evolution of extreme fire events in the Baikal region. An area of 127 000 km2 burned in this region in 2003, a large part of it in regions underlain by permafrost. Analyses of satellite data for 2002–2009 indicate that previous-summer surface moisture is a better predictor for burned area than precipitation anomalies or fire weather indices for larch forests with continuous permafrost. Our analysis advances the understanding of complex interactions between the atmosphere, vegetation and soil, and how coupled mechanisms can lead to extreme events. These findings emphasize the importance of a mechanistic coupling of soil thermodynamics, hydrology, vegetation functioning, and fire activity in Earth system models for projecting climate change impacts over the next century.
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    Assessing inter-sectoral climate change risks: The role of ISIMIP
    (Bristol : IOP Publishing, 2017) Rosenzweig, Cynthia; Arnell, Nigel W.; Ebi, Kristie L.; Lotze-Campen, Hermann; Raes, Frank; Rapley, Chris; Smith, Mark Stafford; Cramer, Wolfgang; Frieler, Katja; Reyer, Christopher P.O.; Schewe, Jacob; van Vuuren, Detlef; Warszawski, Lila
    The aims of the Inter-Sectoral Impact Model Intercomparison Project (ISIMIP) are to provide a framework for the intercomparison of global and regional-scale risk models within and across multiple sectors and to enable coordinated multi-sectoral assessments of different risks and their aggregated effects. The overarching goal is to use the knowledge gained to support adaptation and mitigation decisions that require regional or global perspectives within the context of facilitating transformations to enable sustainable development, despite inevitable climate shifts and disruptions. ISIMIP uses community-agreed sets of scenarios with standardized climate variables and socio-economic projections as inputs for projecting future risks and associated uncertainties, within and across sectors. The results are consistent multi-model assessments of sectoral risks and opportunities that enable studies that integrate across sectors, providing support for implementation of the Paris Agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.