Photo: Kirill Shipitsyn / RIA Novosti
Russian scientists have shown that climate change in Siberia contributes to the increase in the number of severe floods. One of the reasons is the deterioration of ecosystems due to the substitution of pine, Siberian larch, which efficiently absorbs soil moisture. The study is published in the journal Agricultural and forest meteorology.
Experts assessed the impact of the environment on the density of the juice inside the plant tissues and physiological processes in plants of Siberian larch Larix sibirica and pine Pinus sylvestris. It turned out that the larch absorbs more water from the soil than pine. Total annual transpiration (evaporation of water through exposed surfaces of plants) of larch in two of the vegetation period amounted to 284 mm, and at a pine — 20 per cent less.
In General for all moisture levels of the soil the larch is absorbed and evaporated more water than pine. According to scientists, in recent years there has been a reduction in the area of larch forests through changes in ecosystems and permafrost degradation. This, in turn, will reduce the evaporating ability of forests and the redistribution of precipitation. Also increase the number of extreme events such as floods.
According to study author Josef urban, who leads RIA Novosti, the excessive accumulation of moisture in the soil is an important cause of death of larch. Over time, the forests of Siberia will become like the Scandinavian, where permafrost is a small percentage of the territory, and in forests dominated by pine and spruce.
Video, photo All from Russia.