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Regional risks and opportunities on land use change and climate change with thermal-water ecosystem services: investigation for basins in Caatinga and Atlantic Forest

Abstract

To understand how the Biosphere contributes to the hydrological and climate system and its social impact is a global priority of WMO/Urban Integrated Weather, Environment and Climate Services, that enphasizes the high potential of ecosystem services for the improvement on water, food and energy securities, on functions and conservation of biodiversity, and on human well being in dense urban environments. Climate projections for 21st century show significant impacts of warming over South America that should progress to 2º to 4º C, and with high vulnerable regions to rainfall change especially in brazillian Northeast. This project aims do investigate the effects of global climate and land use changes on local and regional hydrological regime, for strategic basins within the Caatinga and southeast Atlantic Forest biomes, with the purpose to assess risks and opportunities of thermal-water ecosystem services to contribute to water security. We specify the following main tasks: enlarge the understanding of hydrometeorological process at local and basin scales within areas of forest restoration (Projeto Conservador de Águas), in order to keep monitoring and analysis of field data, calibration of discharge gauges and soil moisture sensors, and spectral analysis to refine calculations of atmospheric fluxes, that will all be used to force and calibrate atmospheric and hydrological models; refine results of climate change outputs under diferente land cover, at the basin scale over Southeast and Northeast brazillian regions, by making critical analysis of regionalized climate projections and characterization of climate extremes; assess impacts of land use change with hydrological simulations using land cover scenarios under hypotheses of vegetation supression or forest restoration at key functional areas (riparian, slopes, springs); assess with coupled atmosphere-surface models and connected hydrological modelling the common impact of land use and climate change, in special cases for desertification over Northeast Brazil. (AU)