Heatwave Surprise

Our new paper in Nature Scientific Reports shows that patterns of stomatal behaviour around the world have surprising ramifications for global climate. Previously our ecosystem modelling group showed clear differences in stomatal behaviour among plant functional types, based on datasets contributed by collaborators around the globe (Lin et al. 2015 Nature Climate Change).  Now working with climate modellers, we find that these differences in leaf-level stomatal behaviour imply differences in ecosystem-scale water use – with major consequences for land surface temperatures and the number of heatwaves in future. Heatwaves in the northern hemisphere in the middle of this century may be up to 5 degrees C higher than previously estimated. There is media coverage at phys.org and the Sydney Morning Herald or you can read the full paper (open access) here:

Nature Scientific Reports “Impact of the representation of stomatal conductance on model projections of heatwave intensity” (Jatin Kala, Martin G. De Kauwe, Andy J. Pitman, Belinda E. Medlyn, Ying-Ping Wang, Ruth Lorenz & Sarah E. Perkins-Kirkpatrick)

 

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