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Harrison Research Group News

WSU Press Release on Coastal Hypoxia Model

What would happen to coastal oxygen concentrations if every coastline received a similar amount of nitrogen from rivers as the Gulf of Mexico receives from the Mississippi River? Two COOLBEANS-based versions of this scenario are shown here.  For more information, see the original manuscript.

WSU has written a nice piece about our recent global hypoxia model, which can be found here.  An “Early View” version of the accepted manuscript can be found here, and a related AGU blog post can be found here.  Model code and supporting data can be downloaded here.

New research quantifies US forest vulnerability to drought stress expected with climate change

Although it is widely recognized that climate change will require a major spatial reorganization of forests, our ability to predict exactly how and where forest characteristics and distributions will change has been limited. Current efforts to predict future distribution of forested ecosystems as a function of climate include species distribution models (for fine scale predictions) and potential vegetation climate envelope models (for coarse-grained, large scale predictions). In this paper, titled U.S. Forest Response to Projected Climate-Related Stress: a Tolerance Perspective (Lienard, Harrison, and Strigul In Press at Global Change Biology), an intermediate approach is developed and applied. In this approach, we use stand-level tolerances of environmental stressors to understand forest distributions and vulnerabilities to anticipated climate change. In contrast to other existing models, this approach can be applied at a continental scale while maintaining a direct link to ecologically relevant, climate-related stressors. We demonstrate that shade, dFigure_3rought, and waterlogging tolerances of forest stands are strongly correlated with climate and edaphic conditions in the conterminous US. This discovery allows the development of a Tolerance Distribution Model (TDM), a novel quantitative tool to assess landscape level impacts of climate change. We then focus on evaluating the implications of the drought TDM. Using an ensemble of 17 climate change models to drive this TDM, we estimate that 18% of US ecosystems are vulnerable to drought-related stress over the coming century. Vulnerable areas include mostly the Midwest US and Northeast US, as well as high elevation areas of the Rocky Mountains. We also infer stress incurred by shifting climate should create an opening for the establishment of forest types not currently seen in the conterminous US.

New article by Rebecca Bellmore on how climate affects organic matter transport from agricultural soils to streams via tile drainage

Recent GCWB alum (Ph.D.) Rebecca Bellmore and co-authors have published an article titled Hydrologic control of dissolved organic matter concentration and quality in a semiarid artificially drained agricultural catchment examining climate controls on organic matter transfer from agricultural fields to surface waters in Water Resources Research.