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Disturbance Ecology

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PhD Thesis

Processes altering species richness, primary production and leaf nutritive quality across European grasslands exposed to climate change

Bernd Berauer (09/2021)

Support: Anke Jentsch



full thesis



Climate change is altering ecosystems and ecosystem services all over the globe. The severity of climate change, especially warming, increases with latitude and altitude , leaving high-elevation and latitude ecosystems especially prone to impacts of climate change. Consequently, grasslands of the northern hemisphere and mountain regions of the world are particularly affected. Grassland ecosystems cover large parts of the world and are often anthropogenically used and maintained. To ensure sustainable use and maintenance of ecosystem services contributing to human well-being of grasslands under future conditions such as warmer and drier climate, it is important to understand the interplay between climate change and land-use intensity on the provisioning of ecosystem functions and services in grasslands, especially in temperature limited mountain grasslands. The impact of the interplay between climate change and land-use intensity on ecosystem functions and services in not yet well understood, hence dissentient evidence exists. Climate change happens globally, however concepts and methods to elucidate generality in patterns and processes are necessary to be able to react to climate change pressures in a timely fashion.

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