Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Have Swedish forests recovered from the storm Gudrun?

Date:
August 24, 2012
Source:
European Forest Institute
Summary:
In January 2005, the storm Gudrun hit Sweden. It has been estimated to have caused an overall economic damage of 2.4 billion euros in Swedish forestry alone. But has there been more damage to the forest than was clearly visible? A new shows that Gudrun caused not only immediate damage corresponding to 110% of the average annual harvest in Sweden from only 16% of the country’s forest area but also pervasive effects in terms of growth reduction.

In January 2005, the storm Gudrun hit Sweden. It has been estimated to have caused an overall economic damage of 2.4 billion euros in Swedish forestry alone. But has there been more damage to the forest than was clearly visible? A recently published study by Seidl and Blennow shows that Gudrun caused not only immediate damage corresponding to 110% of the average annual harvest in Sweden from only 16% of the country's forest area but also pervasive effects in terms of growth reduction.

In recent decades, the frequency and severity of natural disturbances by e.g., strong winds and insect outbreaks has increased considerably in many forest ecosystems around the world. Future climate change is expected to further intensify disturbance regimes, which makes addressing disturbances in ecosystem management a top priority. As a prerequisite a broader understanding of disturbance impacts and ecosystem responses is needed. With regard to the effects of strong winds -- the most detrimental disturbance agent in central and northern Europe -- monitoring and management has focused on structural damage, i.e., tree mortality from uprooting and stem breakage. Effects on the functioning of trees surviving the storm (e.g., their productivity and allocation) have been rarely accounted for to date.

Seidl and Blennow show that growth reduction following the storm was significant and pervasive in a 6.79 million hectare forest landscape. Wind-related growth reduction in Norway spruce forests surviving the storm exceeded 10% in the worst hit regions. At the landscape scale, wind-related growth reduction amounted to 3.0 million m3 in the three years following Gudrun. It thus exceeds the annual long-term average storm damage from uprooting and stem breakage in Sweden and is in the same order of magnitude as the volume damaged by spruce bark beetles after Gudrun.

Seidl and Blennow conclude that the impact of strong winds on forest ecosystems is not limited to the immediately visible area of structural damage, and call for a broader consideration of disturbance effects on ecosystem structure and functioning in the context of forest management and climate change mitigation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Forest Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Rupert Seidl, Kristina Blennow. Pervasive Growth Reduction in Norway Spruce Forests following Wind Disturbance. PLoS ONE, 2012; 7 (3): e33301 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0033301

Cite This Page:

European Forest Institute. "Have Swedish forests recovered from the storm Gudrun?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 August 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120824082423.htm>.
European Forest Institute. (2012, August 24). Have Swedish forests recovered from the storm Gudrun?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120824082423.htm
European Forest Institute. "Have Swedish forests recovered from the storm Gudrun?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120824082423.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Have Figured Out Why Rocks Move In Death Valley

Scientists Have Figured Out Why Rocks Move In Death Valley

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) The mystery of the moving rocks in Death Valley, California, has finally been solved. Scientists are pointing to a combo of water, ice and wind. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Big Waves, Minor Flooding from Hurricane

Big Waves, Minor Flooding from Hurricane

AP (Aug. 27, 2014) Thundering surf spawned by Hurricane Marie pounded the Southern California coast Wednesday, causing minor flooding in a low-lying beach town. High surf warnings were posted for Los Angeles County south through Orange County. (Aug. 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Calif. Quake Underscores Need for Early Warning

Calif. Quake Underscores Need for Early Warning

AP (Aug. 26, 2014) Researchers at UC Berkeley are testing a prototype of an earthquake early warning system that California is pursuing years after places like Mexico and Japan already have them up and running. (August 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins