Characterizing climate thresholds for post-fire dynamics of Mediterranean pinewoods
In the Mediterranean region, the increase of aridity associated to global warming is expected to affect natural regeneration processes, from the production of fruits to the germination of the seeds or the establishment and growth of the plants. Besides, an increase in the number, extension and severity of forest wildfires is expected in the Mediterranean, due to the occurrence of longer dry periods, higher fuel loads in the landscape and the increasing length of the fire season. All these factors can compromise the persistence of some species and even induce vegetation shifts or local extinction processes when the species develop close to their climatic limits or when the success of the regeneration is highly constrained of the postfire weather conditions.
The main objective of the project UMBRACLIM is to advance in the understanding of the role played by climate change and, in particular, by the increasing occurrence of extreme dry years in the postfire dynamics of Pinus nigra and Pinus halepensis forests of northeastern Spain. The project UMBRACLIM grounds on the hypothesis that the recovering dynamics of burnt areas will be more and more slow and dependent on the climate because appropriate climatic conditions for the survival and development of the regeneration will be increasingly less frequent.
Main researchers: Lluís Coll; Aitor Ameztegui