Why is the content of this map important?
Climate change impacts on Net Primary Production (NPP) by plants. It is affected mainly by climate parameters (i.e. temperature, precipitation, solar radiation, humidity, etc.). NPP plays a key role in the global carbon cycle by capturing a major part of CO2 emissions from anthropogenic activities. The NPP measure is Carbon per square meter per year (gC/(m2 ∗ yr)).
Which sectors are affected by this result?
NPP is mainly an indicator of carbon uptake capacity of an area. A change of NPP in an area mainly means a change in the photosynthetic activity of plants. This influences the agricultural, industrial and energy supplying sectors.
What is shown on the maps?
The maps show NPP values for the reference and the +2°C global warming periods, and the ensemble mean impacts. The highest NPP value (ca. 590 gC/(m2 ∗ yr) in the reference and 660 gC/(m2 ∗ yr) in the +2°C global warming periods) can be found in temperate and semi-boreal areas. These areas are between maritime temperate and subarctic climates, where the cold deciduous broadleafed forest with broadleafed and coniferous trees are distributed. These areas are the most important locations for carbon sinks of the terrestrial Earth ecosystem. Since NPP is directly influenced by synergy of sunlight intensity, warmth and rainfall, any change in climate straightly affects the photosynthetic activity, and thus directly the carbon source or sink of the terrestrial ecosystems.
Details and further information:
The NPP is mostly affected in regions with high carbon value. In those regions, the carbon capture by plants increases around 80 gC/(m2 ∗ yr). In cold (i.e. northern Europe) and in summer dry regions, the change in NPP is minimal (less than 20 gC/(m2 ∗ yr)). It is important to mention that at the Dinaric Alps, where sub-mediterranean cold deciduous broadleafed forests are distributed, the NPP decreases approximately up to 40 gC/(m2 ∗ yr).
Here only four out of the five mandatory climate simulations could been used: MPI-ESM-LR-r1/CSC-REMO, IPSL-CM5A-MR-r1/IPSL-INERIS-WRF331F, EC-EARTH-r1/KNMI-RACMO22E, EC-EARTH-r12/SMHI-RCA4 as driving forcing for the Community Land Model (CLM4.5). Hence, the ensemble consists of 4 simulations in total.
Abdulla SakalliClimate Risk Management Unit Institute for Environment and Sustainability, European Commission, DG Joint Research Centre TP 290, 21027 (Va), ITALY