Webinar: Responses of Northern Forest Tree Species to Climate Change and Drought


Webinar:  Responses of Northern Forest Tree Species to Climate Change and Drought
Heidi Asbjornsen and Matt Vadeboncoeur

University of New Hampshire
Abstract:  Climate change forecasts predict that the northeastern U.S. will see both an increase in total annual rainfall and a higher frequency of prolonged dry spells.  The extreme drought that affected much of New England during the summer of 2016 served as first glimpse of what such a future climate may look like.  This webinar presents the results from ongoing research in our lab focused on understanding the impacts of climate change, especially drought, on northern forests.  Additionally, we also consider the potential impacts of climate change on the capacity of northern forests to provide important ecosystem services to the region’s communities, such as water resources, the production of timber, maple syrup, and other forest products, hydrologic regulation, and carbon storage.  Specifically, this webinar presents results from research conducted across the northeast, as well as from several long-term experiments in New Hampshire.  We show that across the region, trees growing in warmer climates (PA, WV) exhibit greater sensitivity to moisture stress compared to trees growing in the northern states (ME, VT, NH, NY), and that species differ significantly in responses to different climate variables.  We also found that during the height of the drought in late August and early September, white pine, hemlock, and red oak trees experienced severe moisture stress, as indicated by the almost complete cessation of water uptake. However, red oak exhibited less drought sensitivity, as indicated by its ability to continue photosynthesizing even when soils were very dry.  We conclude by discussing the implications of these findings for the sustainability and management of New Hampshire’s forests for diverse ecosystem services in the face of future climate change.
Date: Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Time: 10:00 – 11:00 AMWebinar Instructions: Follow the link below to register for the webinar. You will receive a confirmation email with instructions to join the webinar. Please log in a few minutes prior to the event so you don’t miss anything! 

If you are interested in attending the seminar in person, please let us know as space is limited.