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Experimental Methodologies for Characterization of Impacts of Drought on Seasonal and Annual Timescales in Portuguese Forests pp. 97-130 $100.00
Authors:  (Abel Rodrigues, Gabriel Pita, Unidade de Silvicultura e Produtos Florestais (Unit of Silviculture and Forest Products), INRB (IP), Quinta do Marquês, Oeiras, Portugal, and others)
Abstract:
The increase in global average temperature, linked to climate change, at the surface
of the globe in the twentieth century was 0.4 to 0.8 ºC (IPCC, 2001). Particularly in
Mediterranean regions the frequency and severity of droughts, worsened since the 70s
due to the increase in atmospheric temperature and decreased precipitation. The drought
of 2004 and 2005 was the worst in the Iberian Peninsula during the last 140 years, having
been recorded, e.g., reductions in rainfall in the South of Portugal about 45 % for longterm
average of 1960-1990. Scenarios for climactic evolution in Portugal based on global
scale models point out to air temperature increases of 3 ºC to 7 ºC and precipitation losses
of 20 % to 40 % till the end of the century. Available scientific evidence indicates that
forests interact with water resources over the full spectrum of timescales. The control of
water use by forests is mainly determined by climate, soil water availability and
physiological and aerodynamic factors. Of these, perhaps the best understood are the
aerodynamic controls.
The role of forest ecosystems, especially in seasonally dry climates, is essential to
the development of water and carbon cycles closely interlinked and contributive to the
dynamics of climate change. Over the past 20 years, research on a global scale have been
made to understand the influence of forest ecosystems in the various processes involved
in the problems of drought such as the quantification of atmospheric evaporation,
precipitation, water storage and runoff. The interaction of drought with other components
of forest ecosystems such as carbon sequestration has also been addressed. 


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Experimental Methodologies for Characterization of Impacts of Drought on Seasonal and Annual Timescales in Portuguese Forests pp. 97-130