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Lehrstuhl für Biogeografie

Prof. Dr. Carl Beierkuhnlein

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Gohlke, A; Wellstein, C; Beierkuhnlein, C; FORKAST consortium, ': "Climatic Impacts on Ecosystems and Climatic Adaptation Strategies" (FORKAST)
Poster, Continents under Climate Change - Conference on the Occasion of the 200th Anniversary of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin: 21.04.2010 - 23.04.2010

Ecosystem research regarding climate adaptation Consequences from global changes are increasingly manifesting themselves in terms of the regional sphere. To date ecological repercussions in all their dimensions are still not completely visible. Hence there exists a sense of uncertainty regarding upcoming impacts of global and climate changes. Therewith new understanding and strategies are necessary to counter challenges we are facing in ecological systems research. Long-lived ecosystems, such as forests, grasslands and lakes can be expected to be considerably impacted by future trends and changes. These ecological systems cover a large proportion of Bavaria and carry considerable economic as well as socio-ecological significance. In the light of current climate and weather changes, the probability is steadily increasing that seldomseen and extreme climatological events will occur more often and with rising intensity. Moreover, novel forms of extreme conditions can be expected. Possible negative developments must therefore be immediately addressed with sufficient adaptive measures. Moreover, eventual positive developments should be recognised and developmental opportunities in the offing should be utilised early on. The research cooperation FORKAST integrates climate researchers of 19 chairs and faculties from the universities of Bayreuth, Erlangen-Nuremberg, Regensburg, the Technical University of Munich and Würzburg. Central issues of interest are: How do extreme climatic conditions (e.g. drought and torrential rains) affect the characteristics of ecological systems, communities and functions? How are ecological processes, such as the production of biomass or the interaction between animals and plants, affected? How resilient are our ecological systems, like grasslands or lakes? Research results in this matter are essential prerequisites in order to evaluate how ecological services (e.g. stability of mountain slopes, agricultural and silvicultural production) will be affected. To facilitate the realisation of these subject-overlapping and inter-structural demands, FORKAST has inter-linked research competencies of Bavarian universities with technical authorities. Up-todate developments in methodology are continuously implemented and combined within the research cooperation. In this manner, the various qualities of monitoring, manipulative experiments and modelling (i.e. simulations) can be optimally networked. The fundamental research results within the cooperation could offer opportunities for implementation in commerce and society in, for example agriculture and silviculture, natural hazards, nature conservation, planning of spaces and water management.
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