Publication Details
Louis de Wergifosse, Frédéric André, Hugues Goosse, Steven Caluwaerts, Lesley De Cruz, Rozemien De Troch, Bert Van Schaeybroeck, Mathieu Jonard

Annals of Forest Science

Contribution To Journal


Key message: The change in forest productivity was simulated in six stands in Wallonia (Belgium) following different climate scenarios using a process-based and spatially explicit tree growth model. Simulations revealed a strong and positive impact of the CO 2 fertilization while the negative effect of the transpiration deficit was compensated by longer vegetation periods. The site modulated significantly the forest productivity, mainly through the stand and soil characteristics. Context: Forest net primary production (NPP) reflects forest vitality and is likely to be affected by climate change. Aims: Simulating the impact of changing environmental conditions on NPP and two of its main drivers (transpiration deficit and vegetation period) in six Belgian stands and decomposing the site effect. Methods: Based on the tree growth model HETEROFOR, simulations were performed for each stand between 2011 and 2100 using three climate scenarios and two CO 2 modalities (constant vs time dependent). Then, the climate conditions, soils and stands were interchanged to decompose the site effect in these three components. Results: In a changing climate with constant atmospheric CO 2 , NPP values remained constant due to a compensation of the negative effect of increased transpiration deficit by a positive impact of longer vegetation periods. With time-dependent atmospheric CO 2 , NPP substantially increased, especially for the scenarios with higher greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. For both atmospheric CO 2 modalities, the site characteristics modulated the temporal trends and accounted in total for 56 to 73% of the variability. Conclusion: Long-term changes in NPP were primarily driven by CO 2 fertilization, reinforced transpiration deficit, longer vegetation periods and the site characteristics.

DOI scopus