Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2019-267
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-2019-267
12 Aug 2019
 | 12 Aug 2019
Status: this discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Biogeosciences (BG). The manuscript was not accepted for further review after discussion.

A new approach for assessing climate change impacts in ecotron experiments

Inne Vanderkelen, Jakob Zschleischler, Lukas Gudmundsson, Klaus Keuler, Francois Rineau, Natalie Beenaerts, Jaco Vangronsveld, and Wim Thiery

Abstract. Ecotron facilities allow accurate control of many environmental variables coupled with extensive monitoring of ecosystem processes. They therefore require multivariate perturbation of climate variables, close to what is observed in the field and projections for the future, preserving the co-variances between variables and the projected changes in variability. Here we present a new experimental design for studying climate change impacts on terrestrial ecosystems and apply it to the UHasselt Ecotron Experiment. The new methodology consists of generating climate forcing along a gradient representative of increasingly high global mean temperature anomalies and uses data derived from the best available regional climate model (RCM) projection. We first identified the best performing regional climate model (RCM) simulation for the ecotron site from the Coordinated Regional Downscaling Experiment in the European Domain (EURO-CORDEX) ensemble with a 0.11° (12.5 km) resolution based on two criteria: (i) highest skill of the simulations compared to observations from a nearby weather station and (ii) representativeness of the multi-model mean in future projections. Our results reveal that no single RCM simulation has the best score for all possible combinations of the four meteorological variables and evaluation metrics considered. Out of the six best performing simulations, we selected the simulation with the lowest bias for precipitation (CCLM4-8-17/EC-EARTH), as this variable is key to ecosystem functioning and model simulations deviated the most for this variable, with values ranging up to double the observed values. The time window is subsequently selected from the RCM projection for each ecotron unit based on the global mean temperature of the driving Global Climate Model (GCM). The ecotron units are forced with 3-hourly output from the RCM projections of the five-year period spanning the year in which the global mean temperature crosses the predefined values. With the new approach, Ecotron facilities become able to assess ecosystem responses on changing climatic conditions, while accounting for the co-variation between climatic variables and their projection in variability, well representing possible compound events. The gradient approach will allow to identify possible threshold and tipping points.

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Inne Vanderkelen, Jakob Zschleischler, Lukas Gudmundsson, Klaus Keuler, Francois Rineau, Natalie Beenaerts, Jaco Vangronsveld, and Wim Thiery
 
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
Inne Vanderkelen, Jakob Zschleischler, Lukas Gudmundsson, Klaus Keuler, Francois Rineau, Natalie Beenaerts, Jaco Vangronsveld, and Wim Thiery
Inne Vanderkelen, Jakob Zschleischler, Lukas Gudmundsson, Klaus Keuler, Francois Rineau, Natalie Beenaerts, Jaco Vangronsveld, and Wim Thiery

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