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Gas exchange and water relations responses to warming were compared for two shrub species, Artemisia tridentata spp. vaseyana (Asteraceae), a widely distributed evergreen species of the Great Basin and the western slope of the Rocky Mountains, and Pentaphylloides floribunda (Rosaceae), a deciduous shrub limited in distribution to moist, high-elevation meadows. Plants were exposed to an in situ infrared (IR) climate change manipulation at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory, near Crested Butte, CO. Measurements of gas exchange and water relations were made on the two species in July and August, 1993 from plants growing in situ in infrared-heated and control plots. Carbon dioxide uptake, water loss, leaf temperature,...
We evaluated the relationship between annual forage production and annual and seasonal precipitation and temperature at a shortgrass steppe site in north-central Colorado using a long-term data set (52 yr). We also constructed a relationship between forage production and aboveground net primary production (ANPP). Precipitation fluctuated randomly, but temperature had clear warming and cooling trends including a 17-yr warming trend from 1974 to 1990. Forage production was significantly related to both annual and seasonal precipitation but not temperature. Precipitation events between 15 and 30 mm accounted for most of the variability in production because they accounted for most of the variability in precipitation...
Carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) has been proposed as a means to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions with the continued use of fossil fuels. For geologic sequestration, the carbon dioxide is captured from large point sources (e.g., power plants or other industrial sources), transported to the injection site and injected into deep geological formations for storage. This will produce new water challenges, such as the amount of water used in energy resource development and utilization and the "capture penalty" for water use. At depth, brine displacement within formations, storage reservoir pressure increases resulting from injection, and leakage are potential concerns. Potential impacts range from increasing...
ABSTRACT: Water and energy are inextricably bound. Energy is consumed and sometimes produced by every form of water resources system. Opportunities for future development and production of energy resources abound as well as those for significant reductions in energy consumption through wise water development and management. Technological, political, social, economic and environmental factors interrelate in the energy-water mix. The role of the water resources planner will have to be expanded to include assessment of water-energy impacts in addition to traditional planning considerations. An energy conservation account may well have to be added to the dimensions of national economic development and environmental...
Causes for the widespread abundance of the alien grass Bromus tectorum (cheatgrass) after fire in semiarid areas of western North America may include: (1) utilization of resources freed by the removal of fireintolerant plants; and (2) successful competition between B. tectorum and individual plants that survive fire. On a site in northwestern Nevada (USA), measurements of soil water content, plant water potential, aboveground biomass production, water use efficiency, and B. tectorum tiller density were used to determine if B. tectorum competes with either of two native species (Stipa comata and Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus) or simply uses unclaimed resources. Soil water content around native species occurring with...
'C4 photosynthesis' refers to a suite of traits that increase photosynthesis in high light and high temperature environments. Most C4 plants are grasses, which dominate tropical and subtropical grasslands and savannas but are conspicuously absent from cold growing season climates. Physiological attributes of C4 photosynthesis have been invoked to explain C4 grass biogeography; however, the pathway evolved exclusively in grass lineages of tropical origin, suggesting that the prevalence of C4 grasses in warm climates could be due to other traits inherited from their non-C4 ancestors. Here we investigate the relative influences of phylogeny and photosynthetic pathway in determining the ecological distributions of C4...
* 1 In western North America, juniper trees (Juniperus spp.) are apparently encroaching into numerous communities including sagebrush-dominated (Artemisia tridentata) valleys, where, as density of juniper increases, the density and condition of sagebrush decline but juniper condition appears unaffected. * 2 We examined stable isotope proxies of plant gas exchange and relative depth of soil water extraction of Juniperus osteosperma and Artemisia tridentata as their relative densities changed across a transition zone in northern Utah, USA. Measurement of 13C and 18O of foliage allowed separation of the contributions of stomatal and biochemical factors to differences in mean intercellular CO2 concentration, while deuterium...


    map background search result map search result map Shifts in depth of water extraction and photosynthetic capacity inferred from stable isotope proxies across an ecotone of Juniperus osteosperma (Utah juniper) and Artemisia tridentata (big sagebrush)