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FACE facts hold for multiple generations; Evidence from natural CO2 springs

FACE facts hold for multiple generations; Evidence from natural CO2 springs
FACE facts hold for multiple generations; Evidence from natural CO2 springs

Rising atmospheric CO2 concentration is a key driver of enhanced global greening, thought to account for up to 70% of increased global vegetation in recent decades. CO2 fertilization effects have further profound implications for ecosystems, food security and biosphere-atmosphere feedbacks. However, it is also possible that current trends will not continue, due to ecosystem level constraints and as plants acclimate to future CO2 concentrations. Future predictions of plant response to rising [CO2] are often validated using single-generation short-term FACE (Free Air CO2 Enrichment) experiments but whether this accurately represents vegetation response over decades is unclear. The role of transgenerational plasticity and adaptation in the multigenerational response has yet to be elucidated. Here, we propose that naturally occurring high CO2 springs provide a proxy to quantify the multigenerational and long-term impacts of rising [CO2] in herbaceous and woody species respectively, such that plasticity, transgenerational effects and genetic adaptation can be quantified together in these systems. In this first meta-analysis of responses to elevated [CO2] at natural CO2 springs, we show that the magnitude and direction of change in eight of nine functional plant traits are consistent between spring and FACE experiments. We found increased photosynthesis (49.8% in spring experiments, comparable to 32.1% in FACE experiments) and leaf starch (58.6% spring, 84.3% FACE), decreased stomatal conductance (gs, 27.2% spring, 21.1% FACE), leaf nitrogen content (6.3% spring, 13.3% FACE) and Specific Leaf Area (SLA, 9.7% spring, 6.0% FACE). These findings not only validate the use of these sites for studying multigenerational plant response to elevated [CO2], but additionally suggest that long-term positive photosynthetic response to rising [CO2] are likely to continue as predicted by single-generation exposure FACE experiments.

atmospheric CO, climate change, meta-analysis, natural CO spring, plant adaptation, plant response, plasticity
1354-1013
1-11
Saban, Jasmine M.
d767f5dd-170b-4b93-974d-d027dfd78ef7
Chapman, Mark A.
8bac4a92-bfa7-4c3c-af29-9af852ef6383
Taylor, Gail
f3851db9-d37c-4c36-8663-e5c2cb03e171
Saban, Jasmine M.
d767f5dd-170b-4b93-974d-d027dfd78ef7
Chapman, Mark A.
8bac4a92-bfa7-4c3c-af29-9af852ef6383
Taylor, Gail
f3851db9-d37c-4c36-8663-e5c2cb03e171

Saban, Jasmine M., Chapman, Mark A. and Taylor, Gail (2018) FACE facts hold for multiple generations; Evidence from natural CO2 springs. Global Change Biology, 25 (1), 1-11. (doi:10.1111/gcb.14437).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Rising atmospheric CO2 concentration is a key driver of enhanced global greening, thought to account for up to 70% of increased global vegetation in recent decades. CO2 fertilization effects have further profound implications for ecosystems, food security and biosphere-atmosphere feedbacks. However, it is also possible that current trends will not continue, due to ecosystem level constraints and as plants acclimate to future CO2 concentrations. Future predictions of plant response to rising [CO2] are often validated using single-generation short-term FACE (Free Air CO2 Enrichment) experiments but whether this accurately represents vegetation response over decades is unclear. The role of transgenerational plasticity and adaptation in the multigenerational response has yet to be elucidated. Here, we propose that naturally occurring high CO2 springs provide a proxy to quantify the multigenerational and long-term impacts of rising [CO2] in herbaceous and woody species respectively, such that plasticity, transgenerational effects and genetic adaptation can be quantified together in these systems. In this first meta-analysis of responses to elevated [CO2] at natural CO2 springs, we show that the magnitude and direction of change in eight of nine functional plant traits are consistent between spring and FACE experiments. We found increased photosynthesis (49.8% in spring experiments, comparable to 32.1% in FACE experiments) and leaf starch (58.6% spring, 84.3% FACE), decreased stomatal conductance (gs, 27.2% spring, 21.1% FACE), leaf nitrogen content (6.3% spring, 13.3% FACE) and Specific Leaf Area (SLA, 9.7% spring, 6.0% FACE). These findings not only validate the use of these sites for studying multigenerational plant response to elevated [CO2], but additionally suggest that long-term positive photosynthetic response to rising [CO2] are likely to continue as predicted by single-generation exposure FACE experiments.

Text
Saban et al 2018 Global Change Biology - Version of Record
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 13 August 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 13 November 2018
Keywords: atmospheric CO, climate change, meta-analysis, natural CO spring, plant adaptation, plant response, plasticity

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 426453
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/426453
ISSN: 1354-1013
PURE UUID: 6d1d883d-be8a-4770-a8fc-ab8efa632231
ORCID for Mark A. Chapman: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-7151-723X
ORCID for Gail Taylor: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-8470-6390

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 28 Nov 2018 17:30
Last modified: 27 Jan 2020 13:46

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