Global and Regional Implications of Biome Evolution on the Hydrologic Cycle and Climate in the NCAR Dynamic Vegetation Model | Land Portal

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October 2020
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© 2020 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article.

Vegetation influences climate by altering water and energy budgets. With intensifying threats from anthropogenic activities, both terrestrial biomes and climate are expected to change, and the need to understand land–atmosphere interactions will become increasingly crucial. We ran a climate model coupled with a Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (DGVM) to investigate the establishment of terrestrial biomes starting from a bareground scenario and how these biomes influence the climate throughout their evolution. Vegetation reaches quasi-equilibrium after ~350 years, and the vegetation establishment results in global increases in temperature (~2.5 °C), precipitation (~5.5%) and evapotranspiration as well as declines in albedo and sea ice volumes. In high latitude regions, vegetation establishment decreases albedo, causing an increase in global temperatures as well as a northward shift of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). Low latitude tropical afforestation results in greater evapotranspiration and precipitation, and an initial decrease in temperatures due to evaporative cooling.

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Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

Levey, Jessica
Lee, Jung-Eun


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