Scientists learned about climate changes from tree rings

Scientists learned about climate changes from tree rings

June 22, 2023

Tree growth is affected by rainfall, humidity and sunshine duration.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. Siberian Federal University scientists as part of an international scientific group studied how the variation of stable isotopes of oxygen, carbon and hydrogen in the coniferous trees’ annual rings in the subarctic regions changed over time. The information will allow to model climate forecasts more accurately, according to the university official portal.

The researchers concluded that the permafrost melting and the processes of rocks and soil uneven subsidence due to underground ice thawing make boreal forests, which cover a vast territory from 50 to 70 degrees north latitude, extremely vulnerable to climate warming. As the temperature rises, more organic carbon is released into the atmosphere.

According to Olga Churakova, the SibFU ecosystem biogeochemistry laboratory leading researcher, changes in spring-summer air temperature affect the trees growth in regions with a sharply continental climate, and information about these changes is recorded in tree rings.

The current temperature changes in Siberia differ by four degrees from the pre-industrial period data, while European chronologies and models predicted a deviation of 1.5–2.5 degrees. At the same time, the combination of three stable isotopes in tree ring studies can provide a comprehensive description of climate variability in the boreal forest zone and improve the quality of temperature data. With reliable information about past climate change, more accurate models of future climate change can be obtained.

Due to climate change, with an increase in the global average annual temperature on Earth by five degrees, climatologist Alexey Kokorin admitted the possibility of transferring the capital of Russia to a Siberian city – it could be, according to the scientist, Krasnoyarsk or Novosibirsk.

Previously, scientists came to the conclusion that climate change and the reduction in the Siberian forests area led to the water cycle acceleration in the Arctic shelf zone.

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Text: Elena Popova, Photo: editorial archive

June 22, 2023

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