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Now showing 1 - 7 of 7
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    Modeling of two different water uptake approaches for mono-and mixed-species forest stands
    (Basel : MDPI, 2015) Gutsch, Martin; Lasch-Born, Petra; Suckow, Felicitas; Reyer, Christopher P.O.
    To assess how the effects of drought could be better captured in process-based models, this study simulated and contrasted two water uptake approaches in Scots pine and Scots pine-Sessile oak stands. The first approach consisted of an empirical function for root water uptake (WU1). The second approach was based on differences of soil water potential along a soil-plant-atmosphere continuum (WU2) with total root resistance varying at low, medium and high total root resistance levels. Three data sets on different time scales relevant for tree growth were used for model evaluation: Two short-term datasets on daily transpiration and soil water content as well as a long-term dataset on annual tree ring increments. Except WU2 with high total root resistance, all transpiration outputs exceeded observed values. The strongest correlation between simulated and observed annual tree ring width occurred with WU2 and high total root resistance. The findings highlighted the importance of severe drought as a main reason for small diameter increment. However, if all three data sets were taken into account, no approach was superior to the other. We conclude that accurate projections of future forest productivity depend largely on the realistic representation of root water uptake in forest model simulations.
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    Management scenarios of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and their impacts under recent and future climates
    (Basel : MDPI, 2017) Liersch, Stefan; Koch, Hagen; Hattermann, Fred Fokko
    Close to the border with Sudan, Ethiopia is currently building the largest hydroelectric power plant in Africa with a storage volume corresponding to approximately 1.5 years of the mean discharges of the Blue Nile. This endeavor is controversially debated in the public and the scientific literature. Contributing to this discussion, by shading some light on climate change issues, an eco-hydrological model, equipped with a reservoir module, was applied to investigate downstream hydrological impacts during filling and regular operation, the latter considering climate change projected by an ensemble of 10 global and regional climate models. Our results show that at the earliest after 20 months, the dam could produce hydroelectric power. Full supply level may be reached after four years or not at all, depending on filling policies and assumptions of seepage rates. Under recent hydro-climatic conditions, the dam may produce 13 TWh −a , which is below the envisaged target of 15.7 TWh −a . The ensemble mean suggests slightly increasing hydropower production in the future. Almost independently of the operation rules, the highly variable discharge regime will be significantly altered to a regime with almost equal flows each month. Achieving a win-win situation for all riparian countries requires a high level of cooperation in managing the Eastern Nile water resources.
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    Record Balkan floods of 2014 linked to planetary wave resonance
    (Washington, DC : American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2016) Stadtherr, Lisa; Coumou, Dim; Petoukhov, Vladimir; Petri, Stefan; Rahmstorf, Stefan
    In May 2014, the Balkans were hit by a Vb-type cyclone that brought disastrous flooding and severe damage to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, and Croatia. Vb cyclones migrate from the Mediterranean, where they absorb warm and moist air, to the north, often causing flooding in central/eastern Europe. Extreme rainfall events are increasing on a global scale, and both thermodynamic and dynamical mechanisms play a role. Where thermodynamic aspects are generally well understood, there is large uncertainty associated with current and future changes in dynamics. We study the climatic and meteorological factors that influenced the catastrophic flooding in the Balkans, where we focus on large-scale circulation. We show that the Vb cyclone was unusually stationary, bringing extreme rainfall for several consecutive days, and that this situation was likely linked to a quasi-stationary circumglobal Rossby wave train. We provide evidence that this quasi-stationary wave was amplified by wave resonance. Statistical analysis of daily spring rainfall over the Balkan region reveals significant upward trends over 1950–2014, especially in the high quantiles relevant for flooding events. These changes cannot be explained by simple thermodynamic arguments, and we thus argue that dynamical processes likely played a role in increasing flood risks over the Balkans.
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    The Scenario Model Intercomparison Project (ScenarioMIP) for CMIP6
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2016) O'Neill, Brian C.; Tebaldi, Claudia; van Vuuren, Detlef P.; Eyring, Veronika; Friedlingstein, Pierre; Hurtt, George; Knutti, Reto; Kriegler, Elmar; Lamarque, Jean-Francois; Lowe, Jason; Meehl, Gerald A.; Moss, Richard; Riahi, Keywan; Sanderson, Benjamin M.
    Projections of future climate change play a fundamental role in improving understanding of the climate system as well as characterizing societal risks and response options. The Scenario Model Intercomparison Project (ScenarioMIP) is the primary activity within Phase 6 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6) that will provide multi-model climate projections based on alternative scenarios of future emissions and land use changes produced with integrated assessment models. In this paper, we describe ScenarioMIP's objectives, experimental design, and its relation to other activities within CMIP6. The ScenarioMIP design is one component of a larger scenario process that aims to facilitate a wide range of integrated studies across the climate science, integrated assessment modeling, and impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability communities, and will form an important part of the evidence base in the forthcoming Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessments. At the same time, it will provide the basis for investigating a number of targeted science and policy questions that are especially relevant to scenario-based analysis, including the role of specific forcings such as land use and aerosols, the effect of a peak and decline in forcing, the consequences of scenarios that limit warming to below 2°C, the relative contributions to uncertainty from scenarios, climate models, and internal variability, and long-term climate system outcomes beyond the 21st century. To serve this wide range of scientific communities and address these questions, a design has been identified consisting of eight alternative 21st century scenarios plus one large initial condition ensemble and a set of long-term extensions, divided into two tiers defined by relative priority. Some of these scenarios will also provide a basis for variants planned to be run in other CMIP6-Endorsed MIPs to investigate questions related to specific forcings. Harmonized, spatially explicit emissions and land use scenarios generated with integrated assessment models will be provided to participating climate modeling groups by late 2016, with the climate model simulations run within the 2017–2018 time frame, and output from the climate model projections made available and analyses performed over the 2018–2020 period.
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    Half a degree additional warming, prognosis and projected impacts (HAPPI): Background and experimental design
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2017) Mitchell, Daniel; AchutaRao, Krishna; Allen, Myles; Bethke, Ingo; Beyerle, Urs; Ciavarella, Andrew; Forster, Piers M.; Fuglestvedt, Jan; Gillett, Nathan; Haustein, Karsten; Ingram, William; Iversen, Trond; Kharin, Viatcheslav; Klingaman, Nicholas; Massey, Neil; Fischer, Erich; Schleussner, Carl-Friedrich; Scinocca, John; Seland, Øyvind; Shiogama, Hideo; Shuckburgh, Emily; Sparrow, Sarah; Stone, Dáithí; Uhe, Peter; Wallom, David; Wehner, Michael; Zaaboul, Rashyd
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has accepted the invitation from the UNFCCC to provide a special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and on related global greenhouse-gas emission pathways. Many current experiments in, for example, the Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project (CMIP), are not specifically designed for informing this report. Here, we document the design of the half a degree additional warming, projections, prognosis and impacts (HAPPI) experiment. HAPPI provides a framework for the generation of climate data describing how the climate, and in particular extreme weather, might differ from the present day in worlds that are 1.5 and 2.0°C warmer than pre-industrial conditions. Output from participating climate models includes variables frequently used by a range of impact models. The key challenge is to separate the impact of an additional approximately half degree of warming from uncertainty in climate model responses and internal climate variability that dominate CMIP-style experiments under low-emission scenarios. Large ensembles of simulations (> 50 members) of atmosphere-only models for three time slices are proposed, each a decade in length: the first being the most recent observed 10-year period (2006–2015), the second two being estimates of a similar decade but under 1.5 and 2°C conditions a century in the future. We use the representative concentration pathway 2.6 (RCP2.6) to provide the model boundary conditions for the 1.5°C scenario, and a weighted combination of RCP2.6 and RCP4.5 for the 2°C scenario.
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    CUDe — Carbon utilization degree as an indicator for sustainable biomass use
    (Basel : MDPI, 2016) Anja Hansen, Anja Hansen; Budde, Jörn; Karatay, Yusuf Nadi; Prochnow, Annette
    Carbon (C) is a central element in organic compounds and is an indispensable resource for life. It is also an essential production factor in bio-based economies, where biomass serves many purposes, including energy generation and material production. Biomass conversion is a common case of transformation between different carbon-containing compounds. At each transformation step, C might be lost. To optimize the C use, the C flows from raw materials to end products must be understood. The estimation of how much of the initial C in the feedstock remains in consumable products and delivers services provides an indication of the C use efficiency. We define this concept as Carbon Utilization Degree (CUDe) and apply it to two biomass uses: biogas production and hemp insulation. CUDe increases when conversion processes are optimized, i.e., residues are harnessed and/or losses are minimized. We propose CUDe as a complementary approach for policy design to assess C as an asset for bio-based production. This may lead to a paradigm shift to see C as a resource that requires sustainable exploitation. It could complement the existing methods that focus solely on the climate impact of carbon.
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    Profitability of management systems on German fenlands
    (Basel : MDPI, 2016) Rebhann, Marco; Karatay, Yusuf Nadi; Filler, Günther; Prochnow, Annette
    Fens are organic sites that require drainage for agricultural use. Lowering the groundwater level leads to trade-offs between economic benefits and environmental impacts (i.e., CO2 and nutrient emissions). To identify management options that are both environmentally and economically sustainable, a propaedeutic systematic analysis of the costs, income and profit of different land use and management systems on fenlands is necessary. This study provides an overview of the profitability, labor demand and comparative advantages of feasible management systems on German fenlands. Twenty management practices in four land use systems are analyzed. The results indicate that most management systems are profitable only with subsidies and payments for ecosystem services. In addition to sales revenue, these payments are indispensable to promote peat-saving agricultural practices on fenlands. Regarding the labor aspect, intensive management systems caused an increase in working hours per hectare, which may positively affect employment in rural areas. The calculations obtained in this study can be used as a basis for estimations of greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation costs when management systems are associated with GHG emission values.