Geoecosystem Response to Global Climate Change in Mid-latitude Mountain Regions

Research Project , Research Report 2001

Hiroo OHMORI Dept. of Natural environmental Studies, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Kazuo SUZUKI Dept. of Forest Science, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Kimito FURUTA Dept. of Forest Science, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Hisayoshi YAGI Dept. of Forest Science, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Toshihiko SUGAI Dept. of Natural environmental Studies, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Tsuyoshi OHTA Dept. of Natural environmental Studies, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Atsuko TERAZONO Dept. of Natural environmental Studies, Graduate School of Frontier Sciences, the Univ. of Tokyo
Hiroki J. IGUCHI Graduate School of Environmental Sciences, Aomori Univ.(Research Partners)
Atsumu OHMURA Dept. of Geography, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Switzerland

Abstract

Impact of global warming by so-called greenhouse gases like CO2, CH4 and others on vegetation ecology is among the most serious environmental issues. To investigate how plants response to global warming, an experiment of greenhouse effect on vegetation has been continued at a high mountain, Mt. Norikura(3,025m a.s.l.), central Japan, since 1997. Five open-top chambers which are small greenhouses with a size of 85 cm in diameter and 30 cm in height were set over alpine plant communities of small woody plants and herbaceou vegetatnion. At places inside and outside of the chambers, seasonal changes in vegetation growth and phenology were observed every month. Using automatic data-recorders, some climate elements such as air and ground temperatures, humidity and rainfall have been observed every hour. Some results through the experiment were quite remarkable. Due to the temperature enhancement over 0.5°C, plant growth rates and phenological changes showed notable differences between the inside and the outside of chambers. The response were different by indifferent plant species. The results suggest that dominant species in plant community should be replaced by the species not only with a high physiological response to warming but also with a growing from extending tree crown.

Keywords:

vegetation reponse to climate change, global warming, vegetation change, experiment of greenhouse effect on vegetation, alpine plant communities of high mountain in Japan