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Ecophysiological controls on Amazonian precipitation seasonality and variability

Grant number: 13/50531-2
Support type:Research Program on Global Climate Change - Regular Grants
Duration: January 01, 2014 - December 31, 2017
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Geosciences
Cooperation agreement: GOAmazon Collaborative Research
Principal Investigator:Laura de Simone Borma
Grantee:Laura de Simone Borma
Principal investigator abroad: Jung-Eun Lee
Institution abroad: Brown University, United States
Home Institution: Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais (INPE). Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia, Inovações e Comunicações (Brasil). São José dos Campos , SP, Brazil

Abstract

The Amazon currently plays a criticaI role in the terrestrial climate system, in terms of, e.g., regulating carbon stocks and supporting high biodiversity and endemism. Over the last decade, Amazonian forests have begun experiencing more frequent dry periods, including two extreme drought episodes in 2005 and 2010. However, the future of the Amazon as projected by current generation climate or earth system models is highly uncertain: how global warming and other aspects of anthropogenic change such as deforestation and degradation will ultimately impact this system is far from clear. A dominant source of uncertainty regarding Amazonian climate and its future evolution is the role of land-vegetation-atmosphere coupling, especially interactions of and feedbacks between vegetation and precipitating deep convection occurring during the late dry season/early wet season when land-vegetation-atmosphere coupling has been shown to be stronger. Quantitative understanding of this coupling is criticaI since forest productivity is sensitive to the duration and intensity of the dry season. Thus, our principal objective is to address how vegetation influences climate variability and precipitation over Amazonian rainforests, with an emphasis on plant physiological controls on deep convection triggering along a geographical water stress gradient. To support this objective, our proposed research comprises three interrelated activities: (i) in situ measurements of plant physiological water stress with a focus on fluorescence and its control on surface energy and water budgets as observed at existing flux tower sites; (ii) diagnostic analysis of plant physiological parameters and processes, observed surface turbulent fluxes, boundary layer properties, and cloud cover and precipitation along a moisture gradient; and (iii) process-based model studies of the pathways through which the surface energy partitioning (Bowen ratio) and transpiration, as modified by water stress, influence convection both locally and non-locally. These activities cut across programmatic objectives expressed by ali 3 of the DOE BER research programs supporting GOAmazon. Moreover, the synthesis of new in-situ fluorescence data combined with existing or planned ground and satellite observations and process studies with models of varying levels of complexity is ultimately expected to inform the development and implementation of representations of coupled land-vegetation-atmosphere processes in state-of-the-art climate models (e.g., the NCAR CLM-CAM). (AU)

Scientific publications (4)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
BARROS, FERNANDA DE V.; BITTENCOURT, PAULO R. L.; BRUM, MAURO; RESTREPO-COUPE, NATALIA; PEREIRA, LUCIANO; TEODORO, GRAZIELLE S.; SALESKA, SCOTT R.; BORMA, LAURA S.; CHRISTOFFERSEN, BRADLEY O.; PENHA, DELIANE; ALVES, LUCIANA F.; LIMA, ADRIANO J. N.; CARNEIRO, VILANY M. C.; GENTINE, PIERRE; LEE, JUNG-EUN; ARAGAO, LUIZ E. O. C.; IVANOV, VALERIY; LEAL, LEILA S. M.; ARAUJO, ALESSANDRO C.; OLIVEIRA, RAFAEL S. Hydraulic traits explain differential responses of Amazonian forests to the 2015 El Nino-induced drought. NEW PHYTOLOGIST, v. 223, n. 3, p. 1253-1266, AUG 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
FONSECA, LETICIA D. M.; DALAGNOL, RICARDO; MALHI, YADVINDER; RIFAI, SAMI W.; COSTA, GABRIEL B.; SILVA, THIAGO S. F.; DA ROCHA, HUMBERTO R.; TAVARES, IANE B.; BORMA, LAURA S. Phenology and Seasonal Ecosystem Productivity in an Amazonian Floodplain Forest. REMOTE SENSING, v. 11, n. 13 JUL 1 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
VAN EMMERIK, TIM; STEELE-DUNNE, SUSAN; HUT, ROLF; GENTINE, PIERRE; GUERIN, MARCEAU; OLIVEIRA, RAFAEL S.; WAGNER, JIM; SELKER, JOHN; VAN DE GIESEN, NICK. Measuring Tree Properties and Responses Using Low-Cost Accelerometers. SENSORS, v. 17, n. 5 MAY 2017. Web of Science Citations: 9.
STARK, SCOTT C.; BRESHEARS, DAVID D.; GARCIA, ELIZABETH S.; LAW, DARIN J.; MINOR, DAVID M.; SALESKA, SCOTT R.; SWANN, ABIGAIL L. S.; CAMILO VILLEGAS, JUAN; ARAGAO, LUIZ E. O. C.; BELLA, ELIZABETH M.; BORMA, LAURA S.; COBB, NEIL S.; LITVAK, MARCY E.; MAGNUSSON, WILLIAM E.; MORTON, JOHN M.; REDMOND, MIRANDA D. Toward accounting for ecoclimate teleconnections: intra- and inter-continental consequences of altered energy balance after vegetation change. LANDSCAPE ECOLOGY, v. 31, n. 1, p. 181-194, JAN 2016. Web of Science Citations: 20.

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