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Selection: with tag global-scale [at least 200 articles] 


Global MODIS fraction of green vegetation cover for monitoring abrupt and gradual vegetation changes

Remote Sensing, Vol. 10, No. 4. (23 April 2018), 653,


The presence and distribution of green vegetation cover in the biosphere are of paramount importance in investigating cause-effect phenomena at the land/atmosphere interface, estimating primary production rates as part of global carbon and water cycle assessments and evaluating soil protection and land use change over time. The fraction of green vegetation cover (FCover) as estimated from satellite observations has already been demonstrated to be an extraordinarily useful product for understanding vegetation cover changes, for supporting ecosystem service assessments over areas with ...


Alternative pathways to the 1.5 °C target reduce the need for negative emission technologies

Nature Climate Change (13 April 2018),


Mitigation scenarios that achieve the ambitious targets included in the Paris Agreement typically rely on greenhouse gas emission reductions combined with net carbon dioxide removal (CDR) from the atmosphere, mostly accomplished through large-scale application of bioenergy with carbon capture and storage, and afforestation. However, CDR strategies face several difficulties such as reliance on underground CO2 storage and competition for land with food production and biodiversity protection. The question arises whether alternative deep mitigation pathways exist. Here, using an integrated assessment model, ...


Pathways limiting warming to 1.5°C: a tale of turning around in no time?

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, Vol. 376, No. 2119. (02 April 2018), 20160457,


We explore the feasibility of limiting global warming to 1.5°C without overshoot and without the deployment of carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technologies. For this purpose, we perform a sensitivity analysis of four generic emissions reduction measures to identify a lower bound on future CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion and industrial processes. Final energy demand reductions and electrification of energy end uses as well as decarbonization of electricity and non-electric energy supply are all considered. We find the lower bound of ...


Attribution of recent temperature behaviour reassessed by a neural-network method

Scientific Reports, Vol. 7, No. 1. (15 December 2017),


Attribution studies on recent global warming by Global Climate Model (GCM) ensembles converge in showing the fundamental role of anthropogenic forcings as primary drivers of temperature in the last half century. However, despite their differences, all these models pertain to the same dynamical approach and come from a common ancestor, so that their very similar results in attribution studies are not surprising and cannot be considered as a clear proof of robustness of the results themselves. Thus, here we adopt a ...


Fire forbids fifty-fifty forest

PLOS ONE, Vol. 13, No. 1. (19 January 2018), e0191027,


Recent studies have interpreted patterns of remotely sensed tree cover as evidence that forest with intermediate tree cover might be unstable in the tropics, as it will tip into either a closed forest or a more open savanna state. Here we show that across all continents the frequency of wildfires rises sharply as tree cover falls below ~40%. Using a simple empirical model, we hypothesize that the steepness of this pattern causes intermediate tree cover (30‒60%) to be unstable for a ...


New global forest/non-forest maps from ALOS PALSAR data (2007–2010)

Remote Sensing of Environment, Vol. 155 (December 2014), pp. 13-31,


[Highlights] [::] Global mosaics of ALOS-SAR data were generated annually from 2007 to 2010. [::] Region variability in L-band HH and HV gamma-naught (γ0) for forests was observed. [::] Region-specific thresholds were applied to produce a global forest/non-forest map. [::] The overall agreement was 95%. [::] Annual decreases of HH and HV γ0 suggest a decrease in forest and smoothing Earth. [Abstract] Four global mosaics of Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS) Phased Arrayed L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) HH and HV polarization data were generated at 25 m ...


Global land cover mapping at 30m resolution: A POK-based operational approach

ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Vol. 103 (May 2015), pp. 7-27,


Global Land Cover (GLC) information is fundamental for environmental change studies, land resource management, sustainable development, and many other societal benefits. Although GLC data exists at spatial resolutions of 300 m and 1000 m, a 30 m resolution mapping approach is now a feasible option for the next generation of GLC products. Since most significant human impacts on the land system can be captured at this scale, a number of researchers are focusing on such products. This paper reports the operational ...


Updated world map of the Köppen-Geiger climate classification

Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, Vol. 11, No. 5. (11 October 2007), pp. 1633-1644,


Although now over 100 years old, the classification of climate originally formulated by Wladimir Köppen and modified by his collaborators and successors, is still in widespread use. It is widely used in teaching school and undergraduate courses on climate. It is also still in regular use by researchers across a range of disciplines as a basis for climatic regionalisation of variables and for assessing the output of global climate models. Here we have produced a new global map of climate using ...


Spatially-explicit models of global tree density

Scientific Data, Vol. 3 (16 August 2016), 160069,


Remote sensing and geographic analysis of woody vegetation provide means of evaluating the distribution of natural resources, patterns of biodiversity and ecosystem structure, and socio-economic drivers of resource utilization. While these methods bring geographic datasets with global coverage into our day-to-day analytic spheres, many of the studies that rely on these strategies do not capitalize on the extensive collection of existing field data. We present the methods and maps associated with the first spatially-explicit models of global tree density, which relied ...


Global models underestimate large decadal declining and rising water storage trends relative to GRACE satellite data

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (22 January 2018), 201704665,


[Significance] We increasingly rely on global models to project impacts of humans and climate on water resources. How reliable are these models? While past model intercomparison projects focused on water fluxes, we provide here the first comprehensive comparison of land total water storage trends from seven global models to trends from Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites, which have been likened to giant weighing scales in the sky. The models underestimate the large decadal (2002–2014) trends in water storage relative to ...


A global map of travel time to cities to assess inequalities in accessibility in 2015

Nature, Vol. 553, No. 7688. (10 January 2018), pp. 333-336,


The economic and man-made resources that sustain human wellbeing are not distributed evenly across the world, but are instead heavily concentrated in cities. Poor access to opportunities and services offered by urban centres (a function of distance, transport infrastructure, and the spatial distribution of cities) is a major barrier to improved livelihoods and overall development. Advancing accessibility worldwide underpins the equity agenda of ‘leaving no one behind’ established by the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. This has renewed international ...


Greater future global warming inferred from Earth’s recent energy budget

Nature, Vol. 552, No. 7683. (6 December 2017), pp. 45-50,


Climate models provide the principal means of projecting global warming over the remainder of the twenty-first century but modelled estimates of warming vary by a factor of approximately two even under the same radiative forcing scenarios. Across-model relationships between currently observable attributes of the climate system and the simulated magnitude of future warming have the potential to inform projections. Here we show that robust across-model relationships exist between the global spatial patterns of several fundamental attributes of Earth’s top-of-atmosphere energy budget ...


Less than 2 °C? An economic-environmental evaluation of the Paris Agreement

Ecological Economics, Vol. 146 (April 2018), pp. 69-84,


[Highlights] [::] 188 countries' INDCs have been analysed from a policies, finance and emissions point of view. [::] Policies and finance are faced up with socio-economic and biophysical constraints. [::] Unilateralism and finance approach lead to mismatches between policies and global objectives. [::] Constraints and mismatches could explain the Paris Agreement ineffectiveness. [Abstract] The literature dedicated to the analysis of the different climate agreements has usually focused on the effectiveness of the aims for emissions in the light of the advance in climate change. This article quantifies ...


2017 hurricanes and aerosols simulation

In Scientific Visualization Studio (November 2017), 12772


[Excerpt] Tracking aerosols over land and water from August 1 to November 1, 2017. Hurricanes and tropical storms are obvious from the large amounts of sea salt particles caught up in their swirling winds. The dust blowing off the Sahara, however, gets caught by water droplets and is rained out of the storm system. Smoke from the massive fires in the Pacific Northwest region of North America are blown across the Atlantic to the UK and Europe. This visualization is a ...


Open geospatial data: an assessment of global boundary datasets

In Proceedings of the 20th annual GIS Research UK (GISRUK 2012) (2012), 35


[Excerpt: Conclusion] Through comparison of GAUL, GADM and UNSALB boundary datasets we found that each dataset has advantages and drawbacks in terms of accuracy and usability, but overall GAUL was the best dataset due to the accuracy and completeness of the dataset. While UNSALB boundaries have the highest rate of accuracy because of validation with national mapping agencies, it is limited in geographic scope. Although GADM has a global scale, many of the boundaries are outdated and it is unclear whether GADM organizers have utilized public feedback ...


Warning signs for stabilizing global CO 2 emissions

Environmental Research Letters, Vol. 12, No. 11. (01 November 2017), 110202,


Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossil fuels and industry comprise ~90% of all CO2 emissions from human activities. For the last three years, such emissions were stable, despite continuing growth in the global economy. Many positive trends contributed to this unique hiatus, including reduced coal use in China and elsewhere, continuing gains in energy efficiency, and a boom in low-carbon renewables such as wind and solar. However, the temporary hiatus appears to have ended in 2017. For 2017, we project emissions ...


Global carbon budget 2017

Earth System Science Data Discussions (13 November 2017), pp. 1-79,


Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere – the "global carbon budget" – is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe data sets and methodology to quantify the five major components of the global carbon budget and their uncertainties. CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and industry (EFF) are based on energy statistics and cement production ...


Towards real-time verification of CO2 emissions

Nature Climate Change, Vol. 7, No. 12. (13 November 2017), pp. 848-850,


The Paris Agreement has increased the incentive to verify reported anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions with independent Earth system observations. Reliable verification requires a step change in our understanding of carbon cycle variability. [\n] Emissions of CO2 from fossil fuels and industry did not change from 2014 to 2016, yet there was a record increase in CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. This apparent inconsistency is explained by the response of the natural carbon cycle to the 2015–2016 El Niño event, but it raises ...


High resolution global gridded data for use in population studies

Scientific Data, Vol. 4 (31 January 2017), 170001,


Recent years have seen substantial growth in openly available satellite and other geospatial data layers, which represent a range of metrics relevant to global human population mapping at fine spatial scales. The specifications of such data differ widely and therefore the harmonisation of data layers is a prerequisite to constructing detailed and contemporary spatial datasets which accurately describe population distributions. Such datasets are vital to measure impacts of population growth, monitor change, and plan interventions. To this end the WorldPop Project ...


Impact of population growth and population ethics on climate change mitigation policy

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 114, No. 46. (14 November 2017), pp. 12338-12343,


[Significance] We investigate how future population growth is relevant to climate change policy. The answer depends importantly on ethical questions about whether our ultimate goal should be to increase the number of people who are happy or rather to increase the average level of people’s happiness. We calculate the best (optimal) emissions reduction pathway given each of these two different goals that society might have and calculate how much cheaper it would be to avoid dangerous interference with the climate given a ...


How population growth relates to climate change

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 114, No. 46. (14 November 2017), pp. 12103-12105,


[Excerpt] Currently, around 7.5 billion people live on our planet and scenarios for the future show a plausible range from 8.5 to over 12 billion before the population will level off or start to decline, depending on the future course of fertility and mortality (1, 2). These people will also have to cope with the consequences of climate change that may be in the range of 1.5 °C to more than 3 °C, depending on the scale of mitigation efforts. The ...


Enhanced poleward propagation of storms under climate change

Nature Geoscience (13 November 2017),


Earth’s midlatitudes are dominated by regions of large atmospheric weather variability—often referred to as storm tracks— which influence the distribution of temperature, precipitation and wind in the extratropics. Comprehensive climate models forced by increased greenhouse gas emissions suggest that under global warming the storm tracks shift poleward. While the poleward shift is a robust response across most models, there is currently no consensus on what the underlying dynamical mechanism is. Here we present a new perspective on the poleward shift, which ...


World’s carbon emissions set to spike by 2% in 2017

Nature, Vol. 551, No. 7680. (13 November 2017),


Increased coal use in China appears to be driving the first increase in global greenhouse-gas output since 2014. [Excerpt] [...] Humanity’s carbon emissions are likely to surge by 2% in 2017, driven mainly by increased coal consumption in China, scientists reported on 13 November. The unexpected rise would end a three-year period in which emissions have remained flat despite a growing global economy. [...] Several factors caused the world’s CO2 emissions to level out from 2014 to 2016, including an economic slowdown ...


GlobalTreeSearch online database



[Excerpt] GlobalTreeSearch is the most comprehensive list of tree species and their country-level distributions. The database is the result of over two years of work to gather both tree species names and their country level distributions. Our intention is for GlobalTreeSearch to be used as a tool for monitoring and managing tree species diversity, forests and carbon stocks on a global, regional or national level. It will also be used as the basis of the Global Tree Assessment, coordinated by BGCI ...


GlobalTreeSearch: the first complete global database of tree species and country distributions

Journal of Sustainable Forestry, Vol. 36, No. 5. (4 July 2017), pp. 454-489,


This article presents, for the first time, an overview of all known tree species by scientific name and country level distribution, and describes an online database GlobalTreeSearch that provides access to this information. Based on our comprehensive analysis of published data sources and expert input, the number of tree species currently known to science is 60,065, representing 20% of all angiosperm and gymnosperm plant species. Nearly half of all tree species (45%) are found in just 10 families, with the 3 ...


Fossil CO2 and GHG emissions of all world countries

Vol. 107877 (2017),


[Excerpt: Executive summary] [::Policy context] Part of the Paris Agreement is the implementation of a transparency framework to be implemented bottom-up based on the national GHG emission inventories of all Parties reported to the UNFCCC. In addition, 5-yearly global stocktakes are planned from 2023 onwards to monitor emission trends and the efforts of the individual Parties. Reported inventories however neither cover the entire globe, nor the entire time period. The Commission’s in-house Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research (EDGAR) estimates anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions for all world countries thereby contributing ...


Well below 2 °C: mitigation strategies for avoiding dangerous to catastrophic climate changes

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 114, No. 39. (26 September 2017), pp. 10315-10323,


The historic Paris Agreement calls for limiting global temperature rise to “well below 2 °C.” Because of uncertainties in emission scenarios, climate, and carbon cycle feedback, we interpret the Paris Agreement in terms of three climate risk categories and bring in considerations of low-probability (5%) high-impact (LPHI) warming in addition to the central (∼50% probability) value. The current risk category of dangerous warming is extended to more categories, which are defined by us here as follows: >1.5 °C as dangerous; >3 ...


Emission budgets and pathways consistent with limiting warming to 1.5[thinsp][deg]C

Nature Geoscience, Vol. advance online publication (18 September 2017),


The Paris Agreement has opened debate on whether limiting warming to 1.5 °C is compatible with current emission pledges and warming of about 0.9 °C from the mid-nineteenth century to the present decade. We show that limiting cumulative post-2015 CO2 emissions to about 200 GtC would limit post-2015 warming to less than 0.6 °C in 66% of Earth system model members of the CMIP5 ensemble with no mitigation of other climate drivers, increasing to 240 GtC with ambitious non-CO2 mitigation. We combine a simple climate–carbon-cycle model ...


Limiting global warming to 1.5 °C may still be possible

Nature (18 September 2017),


Analysis suggests that researchers have underestimated how much carbon humanity can emit before reaching this level of warming. [Excerpt] A team of climate scientists has delivered a rare bit of good news: it could be easier than previously thought to limit global warming to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, as called for in the 2015 Paris climate agreement. But even if the team is right — and some researchers are already questioning the conclusions — heroic efforts to curb greenhouse-gas emissions will ...


An overview of CMIP5 and the experiment design

Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, Vol. 93, No. 4. (7 October 2011), pp. 485-498,


The fifth phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) will produce a state-of-the- art multimodel dataset designed to advance our knowledge of climate variability and climate change. Researchers worldwide are analyzing the model output and will produce results likely to underlie the forthcoming Fifth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Unprecedented in scale and attracting interest from all major climate modeling groups, CMIP5 includes “long term” simulations of twentieth-century climate and projections for the twenty-first century and ...


Emerging role of wetland methane emissions in driving 21st century climate change

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vol. 114, No. 36. (05 September 2017), pp. 9647-9652,


[Significance] Conventional greenhouse gas mitigation policies ignore the role of global wetlands in emitting methane (CH4) from feedbacks associated with changing climate. Here we investigate wetland feedbacks and whether, and to what degree, wetlands will exceed anthropogenic 21st century CH4 emissions using an ensemble of climate projections and a biogeochemical methane model with dynamic wetland area and permafrost. Our results reveal an emerging contribution of global wetland CH4 emissions due to processes mainly related to the sensitivity of methane emissions to temperature ...


A human-driven decline in global burned area

Science, Vol. 356, No. 6345. (30 June 2017), pp. 1356-1362,


[Burn less, baby, burn less] Humans have, and always have had, a major impact on wildfire activity, which is expected to increase in our warming world. Andela et al. use satellite data to show that, unexpectedly, global burned area declined by ∼25% over the past 18 years, despite the influence of climate. The decrease has been largest in savannas and grasslands because of agricultural expansion and intensification. The decline of burned area has consequences for predictions of future changes to the atmosphere, ...


The impact of hunting on tropical mammal and bird populations

Science, Vol. 356, No. 6334. (14 April 2017), pp. 180-183,


[Quantifying hunting-induced defaunation] As the human population grows and increasingly encroaches on remaining wildlife habitat, hunting threatens many species. Benítez-López et al. conducted a large-scale meta-analysis of hunting trends and impacts across the tropics (see the Perspective by Brashares and Gaynor). Bird and mammal populations were considerably lower in areas where hunting occurred. Although commercial hunting and proximity to roads and urban centers were the most damaging factors, all hunting had worrying impacts, even in protected areas. Protection and alternative approaches for ...


Bushmeat hunting and extinction risk to the world's mammals

Royal Society Open Science, Vol. 3, No. 10. (01 October 2016), 160498,


Terrestrial mammals are experiencing a massive collapse in their population sizes and geographical ranges around the world, but many of the drivers, patterns and consequences of this decline remain poorly understood. Here we provide an analysis showing that bushmeat hunting for mostly food and medicinal products is driving a global crisis whereby 301 terrestrial mammal species are threatened with extinction. Nearly all of these threatened species occur in developing countries where major coexisting threats include deforestation, agricultural expansion, human encroachment and ...


Less than 2 °C warming by 2100 unlikely

Nature Climate Change (31 July 2017),


The recently published Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) projections to 2100 give likely ranges of global temperature increase in four scenarios for population, economic growth and carbon use1. However, these projections are not based on a fully statistical approach. Here we use a country-specific version of Kaya’s identity to develop a statistically based probabilistic forecast of CO2 emissions and temperature change to 2100. Using data for 1960–2010, including the UN’s probabilistic population projections for all countries2, 3, 4, we develop ...


A high-accuracy map of global terrain elevations

Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 44, No. 11. (16 June 2017), pp. 5844-5853,

Forest disturbances under climate change

Nature Climate Change, Vol. 7, No. 6. (31 May 2017), pp. 395-402,


Forest disturbances are sensitive to climate. However, our understanding of disturbance dynamics in response to climatic changes remains incomplete, particularly regarding large-scale patterns, interaction effects and dampening feedbacks. Here we provide a global synthesis of climate change effects on important abiotic (fire, drought, wind, snow and ice) and biotic (insects and pathogens) disturbance agents. Warmer and drier conditions particularly facilitate fire, drought and insect disturbances, while warmer and wetter conditions increase disturbances from wind and pathogens. Widespread interactions between agents are ...


Satellites reveal contrasting responses of regional climate to the widespread greening of Earth

Science (25 May 2017), eaal1727,


[The vegetation-climate loop] Just as terrestrial plant biomass is growing in response to increasing atmospheric CO2, climate change, and other anthropogenic influences, so is climate affected by those variations in vegetation. Forzieri et al. used satellite observations to analyze how changes in leaf area index (LAI), a measure of vegetation density, have influenced the terrestrial energy balance and local climates over the past several decades. An increase in LAI has helped to warm boreal zones through a reduction of surface albedo and ...


SoilGrids250m: Global gridded soil information based on machine learning

PLOS ONE, Vol. 12, No. 2. (16 February 2017), e0169748,


This paper describes the technical development and accuracy assessment of the most recent and improved version of the SoilGrids system at 250m resolution (June 2016 update). SoilGrids provides global predictions for standard numeric soil properties (organic carbon, bulk density, Cation Exchange Capacity (CEC), pH, soil texture fractions and coarse fragments) at seven standard depths (0, 5, 15, 30, 60, 100 and 200 cm), in addition to predictions of depth to bedrock and distribution of soil classes based on the World Reference ...


A gridded global data set of soil, intact regolith, and sedimentary deposit thicknesses for regional and global land surface modeling

Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, Vol. 8, No. 1. (March 2016), pp. 41-65,


Earth's terrestrial near-subsurface environment can be divided into relatively porous layers of soil, intact regolith, and sedimentary deposits above unweathered bedrock. Variations in the thicknesses of these layers control the hydrologic and biogeochemical responses of landscapes. Currently, Earth System Models approximate the thickness of these relatively permeable layers above bedrock as uniform globally, despite the fact that their thicknesses vary systematically with topography, climate, and geology. To meet the need for more realistic input data for models, we developed a high-resolution ...


SoilGrids1km - Global soil information based on automated mapping

PLOS ONE, Vol. 9, No. 8. (29 August 2014), e105992,


Soils are widely recognized as a non-renewable natural resource and as biophysical carbon sinks. As such, there is a growing requirement for global soil information. Although several global soil information systems already exist, these tend to suffer from inconsistencies and limited spatial detail. We present SoilGrids1km â a global 3D soil information system at 1 km resolution â containing spatial predictions for a selection of soil properties (at six standard depths): soil organic carbon (g kgâ1), soil pH, sand, silt and ...


WorldClim 2: new 1-km spatial resolution climate surfaces for global land areas

International Journal of Climatology (15 May 2017),


We created a new dataset of spatially interpolated monthly climate data for global land areas at a very high spatial resolution (approximately 1 km2). We included monthly temperature (minimum, maximum and average), precipitation, solar radiation, vapour pressure and wind speed, aggregated across a target temporal range of 1970–2000, using data from between 9000 and 60 000 weather stations. Weather station data were interpolated using thin-plate splines with covariates including elevation, distance to the coast and three satellite-derived covariates: maximum and minimum land surface ...


An ecoregion-based approach to protecting half the terrestrial realm

BioScience (14 April 2017),


We assess progress toward the protection of 50% of the terrestrial biosphere to address the species-extinction crisis and conserve a global ecological heritage for future generations. Using a map of Earth's 846 terrestrial ecoregions, we show that 98 ecoregions (12%) exceed Half Protected; 313 ecoregions (37%) fall short of Half Protected but have sufficient unaltered habitat remaining to reach the target; and 207 ecoregions (24%) are in peril, where an average of only 4% of natural habitat remains. We propose a ...


A global map of roadless areas and their conservation status

Science, Vol. 354, No. 6318. (16 December 2016), pp. 1423-1427,


[Too many roads] Roads have done much to help humanity spread across the planet and maintain global movement and trade. However, roads also damage wild areas and rapidly contribute to habitat degradation and species loss. Ibisch et al. cataloged the world's roads. Though most of the world is not covered by roads, it is fragmented by them, with only 7% of land patches created by roads being greater than 100 km2. Furthermore, environmental protection of roadless areas is insufficient, which could lead ...


A multi-model assessment of the co-benefits of climate mitigation for global air quality

Environmental Research Letters, Vol. 11, No. 12. (01 December 2016), 124013,


We present a model comparison study that combines multiple integrated assessment models with a reduced-form global air quality model to assess the potential co-benefits of global climate mitigation policies in relation to the World Health Organization (WHO) goals on air quality and health. We include in our assessment, a range of alternative assumptions on the implementation of current and planned pollution control policies. The resulting air pollution emission ranges significantly extend those in the Representative Concentration Pathways. Climate mitigation policies complement ...


Annex III: glossary

In Climate Change 2013: the physical science basis - Contribution of Working Group I to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (2013), pp. 1447-1465


[Excerpt] This glossary defines some specific terms as the Lead Authors intend them to be interpreted in the context of this report. Red, italicized words indicate that the term is defined in the Glossary. [\n] [...] ...


No saturation in the accumulation of alien species worldwide

Nature Communications, Vol. 8 (15 February 2017), 14435,


Although research on human-mediated exchanges of species has substantially intensified during the last centuries, we know surprisingly little about temporal dynamics of alien species accumulations across regions and taxa. Using a novel database of 45,813 first records of 16,926 established alien species, we show that the annual rate of first records worldwide has increased during the last 200 years, with 37% of all first records reported most recently (1970–2014). Inter-continental and inter-taxonomic variation can be largely attributed to the diaspora of ...


Forest resilience and tipping points at different spatio-temporal scales: approaches and challenges

Journal of Ecology, Vol. 103, No. 1. (January 2015), pp. 5-15,


[::] Anthropogenic global change compromises forest resilience, with profound impacts to ecosystem functions and services. This synthesis paper reflects on the current understanding of forest resilience and potential tipping points under environmental change and explores challenges to assessing responses using experiments, observations and models. [::] Forests are changing over a wide range of spatio-temporal scales, but it is often unclear whether these changes reduce resilience or represent a tipping point. Tipping points may arise from interactions across scales, as processes such as ...


Communication: science censorship is a global issue

Nature, Vol. 542, No. 7640. (08 February 2017), pp. 165-165,


[Excerpt] [...] Regrettably, suppression of public scientific information is already the norm, or is being attempted, in many countries [...]. We fear that such gagging orders could encourage senior bureaucrats to use funding as a tool with which to rein in academic freedoms. [...] The response of scientists to this type of coercion has been to share scientific information widely and openly using such legal means as social media to defend facts and transparency [...] ...


Ecological responses to recent climate change

Nature, Vol. 416 (2002), pp. 389-395,


There is now ample evidence of the ecological impacts of recent climate change, from polar terrestrial to tropical marine environments. The responses of both flora and fauna span an array of ecosystems and organizational hierarchies, from the species to the community levels. Despite continued uncertainty as to community and ecosystem trajectories under global change, our review exposes a coherent pattern of ecological change across systems. Although we are only at an early stage in the projected trends of global warming, ecological ...

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