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(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

Disruption of hydroecological equilibrium in southwest Amazon mediated by drought

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Maeda, Eduardo Eiji [1] ; Kim, Hyungjun [2] ; Aragao, Luiz E. O. C. [3, 4] ; Famiglietti, James S. [5, 6] ; Oki, Taikan [2]
Total Authors: 5
[1] Univ Helsinki, Dept Geosci & Geog, Helsinki - Finland
[2] Univ Tokyo, Inst Ind Sci, Tokyo - Japan
[3] Natl Inst Space Res INPE, Sao Jose Dos Campos - Brazil
[4] Univ Exeter, Coll Life & Environm Sci, Exeter, Devon - England
[5] Univ Calif Irvine, Dept Earth Syst Sci, Irvine, CA - USA
[6] CALTECH, NASA Jet Prop Lab, Pasadena, CA 91125 - USA
Total Affiliations: 6
Document type: Journal article
Source: Geophysical Research Letters; v. 42, n. 18, p. 7546-7553, SEP 28 2015.
Web of Science Citations: 12

The impacts of droughts on the Amazon ecosystem have been broadly discussed in recent years, but a comprehensive understanding of the consequences is still missing. In this study, we show evidence of a fragile hydrological equilibrium in the western Amazon. While drainage systems located near the equator and the western Amazon do not show water deficit in years with average climate conditions, this equilibrium can be broken during drought events. More importantly, we show that this effect is persistent, taking years until the normal hydrological patterns are reestablished. We show clear links between persistent changes in forest canopy structure and changes in hydrological patterns, revealing physical evidence of hydrological mechanisms that may lead to permanent changes in parts of the Amazon ecosystem. If prospects of increasing drought frequency are confirmed, a change in the current hydroecological patterns in the western Amazon could take place in less than a decade. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 13/50533-5 - Understanding the response of photosynthetic metabolism in tropical forests to seasonal climate variations
Grantee:Luiz Eduardo Oliveira e Cruz de Aragão
Support type: Regular Research Grants