Plant biomass drives a series of ecosystem processes and is critical to ecosystem services. Although numerous experiments have examined the responses of individual and ecosystem biomass to global warming, there is still a lack of reliable scaling relationships from leaf up to ecosystem levels. In this study, we synthesized a data set from 468 papers to investigate the predictive power of leaf traits and biodiversity to ecosystem biomass responses to global warming.
The results showed that the response of individual biomass to warming was perfectly predicted by that of leaf area. At the ecosystem level, the dominant species play a critical role, but the importance depended on their dominance. In addition, biodiversity can stabilize the ecosystem biomass response to warming, by driving the species responses from synchronous or asynchronous toward independence. These results highlighted the importance of leaf area and biodiversity when predicting biomass change.