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PubTalk 3/2009 — Can our Western Forests Take the Heat?!

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Detailed Description

Climatic change and the future of forests in the western United States

By Philip van Mantgem, Ecologist

  • Tree death rates have more than doubled over the last few decades in old-growth forests of our western states, possibly reflecting increasing temperatures, with potentially serious consequences for wildlife, fire risks, and the global carbon cycle
  • Rising regional temperatures have lengthened the summer drought, likely stressing trees and leading to higher death rates
  • Is this alarming trend a harbinger of larger, more abrupt changes in our forests?




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