Detection of a direct carbon dioxide effect in continental river runoff records
Gedney, N.; Cox, P. M.; Betts, R.; Boucher, O.; Huntingford, C.; Stott, P. A.. 2006 Detection of a direct carbon dioxide effect in continental river runoff records. Nature, 439. 835-838. 10.1038/nature04504Full text not available from this repository.
Continental runoff has increased through the twentieth century1, 2 despite more intensive human water consumption3. Possible reasons for the increase include: climate change and variability, deforestation, solar dimming4, and direct atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) effects on plant transpiration5. All of these mechanisms have the potential to affect precipitation and/or evaporation and thereby modify runoff. Here we use a mechanistic land-surface model6 and optimal fingerprinting statistical techniques7 to attribute observational runoff changes1 into contributions due to these factors. The model successfully captures the climate-driven inter-annual runoff variability, but twentieth-century climate alone is insufficient to explain the runoff trends. Instead we find that the trends are consistent with a suppression of plant transpiration due to CO2-induced stomatal closure. This result will affect projections of freshwater availability, and also represents the detection of a direct CO2 effect on the functioning of the terrestrial biosphere.
|Programmes:||CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Water|
|CEH Sections:||_ Process Hydrology|
|Format Availability:||Electronic, Print|
|NORA Subject Terms:||Hydrology
|Date made live:||29 Jun 2007 15:40|
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