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Abstract (from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1873965215000110): The goal of this study was to assess the importance of the 2007 sea ice retreat for hydrologic conditions on the Alaskan North Slope, and how this may have influenced the outbreak of tundra fires in this region. This study concentrates on two years, 2007 and 1996, with different arctic sea ice conditions and tundra fire activity. The year of 2007 is characterized by a low summer sea ice extent (second lowest) and high tundra fire activity, while 1996 had high sea ice extent, and few tundra fires. Atmospheric lateral boundary forcing from the NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis drove the Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) model, along with varying...
Abstract: A significant number of historically existing wetlands that naturally stored rainwater and attenuated flood peaks have now been drained and employed as new farming areas. Beyond the water quality and flow problem, this has resulted in loss of natural habitats of diverse ecological species. Restoring wetlands have hence been proposed as a potential conservation strategy to help attenuate many of these problems. In this study a spatial, multi-objective optimization study of new potential wetlands was carried out to achieve biodiversity improvements in addition to flood reduction benefits and water quality improvements. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used to simulate flow and water quality,...
Impacts of climate change on natural resources need to be evaluated in a range of geography and agricultural systems for better conservation planning. The objectives of this paper were to evaluate spatial sensitivity of predicted soil loss and runoff to climate change at large scales, and to simulate the “regional” impacts of climate change on soil erosion on the southern Great Plains. Relative climate changes at three spatial scales between 1950 to 99, and 2070 to 99, projected using HadCM3 under the A2a, B2a, and GGa1 emission scenarios, were used to generate changed climates for Chickasha, Oklahoma. The Water Erosion Prediction Project (WEPP) model was run for each climate scenario at three spatial scales with...
Runoff losses of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from field applied manure can contribute to surface water pollution. Grass hedges may reduce runoff losses of nutrients and sediment. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of narrow switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) hedges (−0.75 m wide) on the transport of P and N from a field receiving beef cattle feedlot manure under tilled and no-till conditions. This study was conducted on a steep (12 % average slope) Monona silt loam (fine-silty, mixed, superactive, mesic Typic Hapludolls) soil near Treynor, Iowa. The experiment was a split-plot with no-till and disked systems as main plots and subplots of manure, fertilizer, and check with or without a grass...
Since the mid 1990's, Lake Erie has experienced seasonal eutrophication. This investigation was designed to look at potential causes for eutrophication in Lake Erie. It was also designed to see if any correlations exist between agriculturally applied fertilizers (including sewage sludge) and cyanobacterial blooms in the Western Basin of Lake Erie that occurred during the months of July, August, and September for the years 1999-2003. An algorithm was used on available LANDSAT Thematic Mapper (TM) frames to monitor phycocyanin growth caused by cyanobacteria. These images were analyzed in conjunction with Maumee River water quality data, planted winter wheat, local weather data, and records of agriculturally applied...
Seasonal hypoxia in the northern Gulf of Mexico has been linked to increased nitrogen fluxes from the Mississippi and Atchafalaya River Basins, though recent evidence shows that phosphorus also influences productivity in the Gulf. We developed a spatially explicit and structurally detailed SPARROW water-quality model that reveals important differences in the sources and transport processes that control nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) delivery to the Gulf. Our model simulations indicate that agricultural sources in the watersheds contribute more than 70% of the delivered N and P. However, corn and soybean cultivation is the largest contributor of N (52%), followed by atmospheric deposition sources (16%); whereas...
Future changes in the number of dry days per year can either reinforce or counteract projected increases in daily precipitation intensity as the climate warms. We analyze climate model projected changes in the number of dry days using 28 coupled global climate models from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project, version 5 (CMIP5). We find that the Mediterranean Sea region, parts of Central and South America, and western Indonesia could experience up to 30 more dry days per year by the end of this century. We illustrate how changes in the number of dry days and the precipitation intensity on precipitating days combine to produce changes in annual precipitation, and show that over much of the subtropics the change...
Abstract (from http://www.springer.com/us/book/9789400775145): This volume offers a scientific assessment of the effects of climatic variability and change on forest resources in the United States. Derived from a report that provides technical input to the 2013 U.S. Global Change Research Program National Climate Assessment, the book serves as a framework for managing U.S. forest resources in the context of climate change. The authors focus on topics having the greatest potential to alter the structure and function of forest ecosystems, and therefore ecosystem services, by the end of the 21st century. Part I provides an environmental context for assessing the effects of climate change on forest resources, summarizing...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: North Central CASC, Other Tools
Renewable fuel production, particularly grain-based ethanol, is expanding rapidly in the USA. Although subsidized grain-based ethanol may provide a competitively priced transportation fuel, concerns exist about potential environmental impacts. This contribution focuses on potential water quality implications of expanded grain-based ethanol production and potential impacts of perennial-grass–based cellulosic ethanol. Expanded grain-based ethanol will increase and intensify corn production. Even with recommended fertilizer and land conservation measures, corn acreage can be a major source of N loss to water (20–40 kg ha-1 yr-1). A greater acreage of corn is estimated to increase N and P loss to water by 37% (117 million...
Whitefish Lake, which is officially named Bardon Lake, is an oligotrophic, soft-water seepage lake in northwestern Wisconsin, and classified by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources as an Outstanding Resource Water. Ongoing monitoring of the lake demonstrated that its water quality began to degrade (increased phosphorus and chlorophyll a concentrations) around 2002 following a period of high water level. To provide a better understanding of what caused the degradation in water quality, and provide information to better understand the lake and protect it from future degradation, the U.S. Geological Survey did a detailed study from 2004 to 2008. The goals of the study were to describe the past and present...
Concern over global environmental change and associated uncertainty has given rise to greater emphasis on fostering resilience through forest management. We examined the impact of standard silvicultural systems (including clearcutting, shelterwood, and selection) compared with unharvested controls on tree functional identity and functional diversity in three forest types distributed across the northeastern United States. Sites included the Argonne, Bartlett, and Penobscot Experimental Forests located in Wisconsin, New Hampshire, and Maine, respectively. We quantified functional trait means for leaf mass per area, specific gravity, maximum height, height achieved at 20 years, seed mass, drought tolerance, shade tolerance,...
The Software for Assisted Habitat Modeling (SAHM) has been created to both expedite habitat modeling and help maintain a record of the various input data, pre- and post-processing steps and modeling options incorporated in the construction of a species distribution model through the established workflow management and visualization VisTrails software. This paper provides an overview of the VisTrails:SAHM software including a link to the open source code, a table detailing the current SAHM modules, and a simple example modeling an invasive weed species in Rocky Mountain National Park, USA.
Abstract (from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2016EF000479/full): Glacier hypsometry provides a first-order approach for assessing a glacier's response to climate forcings. We couple the Randolph Glacier Inventory to a suite of in situ observations and climate model output to examine potential change for the ∼27,000 glaciers in Alaska and northwest Canada through the end of the 21st century. By 2100, based on Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 4.5–8.5 forcings, summer temperatures are predicted to increase between +2.1 and +4.6°C, while solid precipitation (snow) is predicted to decrease by −6 to −11%, despite a +9 to +21% increase in total precipitation. Snow is predicted to undergo a pronounced...