IGN 15-7 - Climate change in drylands: Unexpected patterns, steep thresholds, and death

Wednesday, August 9, 2017
C123, Oregon Convention Center
Sasha C. Reed, Southwest Biological Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Moab, UT
The arid and semiarid ecosystems that make up drylands represent our planet’s largest biome, encompassing a diverse array of biota and ecosystem types. A thread that connects these varied ecosystems is their responsiveness to changes in climate, including highly dynamic intra- and inter-annual patterns of activity, a propensity for steep climate thresholds and large climate-induced mortality events (including organisms ranging in size from biocrusts to trees), and directional changes in ecosystem structure and function over long timescales. This talk will explore the dynamic nature of dryland responses to climate change, as well as discuss global implications and feedbacks.