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Combined effects of land-use and climate change: Forest

Forestry and global change

Forest research within the BECC programme covers a number of different aspects such as the influence of future climate on pests and parasites, temperature effects on tree physiology, and effects of elevated carbon dioxide and air pollutants such as ozone, nitrogen and sulphur on forest growth. Land use and management of forests are also of large interest; i.e. the potential role of bioenergy in mitigating and adapting to climate change. Our research covers both experimental approaches, use of long-term monitoring data and advanced ecosystem modelling.

A key aim of BECC is to improve the understanding and communication of effects of global change on forests by combining empirical information and modelling. We are active in research communication to stakeholders and policy makers within forestry, national authorities as well as international fora and networks. Dialogue with stakeholders is required to define and formulate suitable adaptation and mitigation measures within and beyond the forest sector.


These are the major research areas within Forestry and global change:

Biogeochemical cycling in forest soils under the influence of climate change, management and atmospheric deposition:

The effects of climate change, forest management and atmospheric deposition on carbon and nitrogen status in soils, soil acidification status and nitrogen leaching are studied through an integrated empirical and modelling approach. The biogeochemical ecosystem model ForSAFE is central in the work, both as a platform for improved process descriptions for e.g. weathering and decomposition of organic matter, and as a tool for future simulations. There are strong links to stakeholders through the work on effects of forest fuel harvesting, and through the connection to the environmental objectives Natural acidification only and Zero eutrophication.
Contact: cecilia [dot] akselsson [at] nateko [dot] lu [dot] se (Cecilia Akselsson)

Forest ecosystems and adaptation of management:

Collaboration between ecosystem modelling and empirical research is carried out to explore the potential outcome of climate change in terms of growing season length and forest productivity, as well as the risk of damage caused by extreme weather events, attacks of pests and pathogens, and loss of biodiversity. Ongoing research includes the development of techniques for analysing different options with respect to a multitude of stakeholder perspectives and model uncertainties.
Contact: anna_maria [dot] jonsson [at] nateko [dot] lu [dot] se (Anna Maria Jönsson)

Synthesis of experimental and modelling expertise to predict climate change impacts:

Implementation of empirical and experimental information into ecosystem models in order to improve predictions of the impacts of climate change (elevated CO2, ozone and temperature) on agricultural and forest ecosystem processes and services.
Contact: johan [dot] uddling [at] bioenv [dot] gu [dot] se (Johan Uddling)

Acclimation to changing temperature

Temperature responses of photosynthesis and respiration are studied linked to analysis of lipid composition and gene expression profiling. Ongoing research includes studies of clones of Norway spruce trees planted at four sites along a latitudinal gradient from Uppsala (Sweden) to Bordeaux (France) having a DT of ca 7 °C.
Contact: goran [dot] wallin [at] bioenv [dot] gu [dot] se (Göran Wallin)


Cluster coordinator
Håkan Pleijel

Phone: +46 (0)31 786 2532 
E-mail: hakan [dot] pleijel [at] bioenv [dot] gu [dot] se

Deputy cluster coordinator
Anders Tunlid

Phone: +46 (0)46 222 3757
E-mail: anders [dot] tunlid [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se