Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE.2011.1.1-01 | Award Amount: 7.75M | Year: 2012
In the midst of a climatic change scenario, the genetics of adaptive response in conifers becomes essential to ensure a sustainable management of genetic resources and an effective breeding. Conifers are the target of major tree breeding efforts worldwide. Advances in molecular technologies, such as next-generation DNA sequencing technologies, could have an enormous impact on the rate of progress and achievements made by tree breeding programmes. These new technologies might be used not only to improve our understanding of fundamental conifer biology, but also to address practical problems for the forest industry as well as problems related to the adaptation and management of conifer forests. In this context, ProCoGen will address genome sequencing of two keystone European conifer species. Genome re-sequencing approaches will be used to obtain two reference pine genomes. Comparative genomics and genetic diversity will be closely integrated and linked to targeted functional genomics investigations to identify genes and gene networks that efficiently help to develop or enhance applications related to forest productivity, forest stewardship in response to environmental change or conservation efforts. The development of high-throughput genotyping tools will produce an array of pre-breeding tools to be implemented in forest tree breeding programmes. ProCoGen will also develop comparative studies based on orthologous sequences, genes and markers, which will allow guiding re-sequencing initiatives and exploiting the research accumulated on each of the species under consideration to accelerate the use of genomic tools in diverse species. ProCoGen will integrate fragmented activities developed by European research groups involved in several ongoing international conifer genome initiatives and contribute to strengthening international collaboration with North American initiatives (US and Canada).
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE-2008-1-2-01 | Award Amount: 3.92M | Year: 2009
Organic and low-input farming systems have been shown to benefit farmland biodiversity although a generic indicator system to assess these benefits at the European level is lacking. The BIOBIO project will therefore pursue the following objectives: 1. Conceptualization of criteria for a scientifically-based selection of biodiversity indicators for organic/low-input farming systems; 2. Assessment and validation of a set of candidate biodiversity indicators in representative case studies across Europe (and in ICPC countries); 3. Preparation of guidelines for the implementation of biodiversity indicators for organic/low-input farming systems for Europe and beyond. Existing indirect farm management indicators as well as direct indicators for genetic, species and habitat diversity will be assessed for their scientific soundness, practicality, geographic scope and usefulness for stakeholders. Candidate indicators will be tested in a standardised design in twelve case studies across Europe and later in three ICPC countries. Case study regions will include pannonian, alpine, boreal, Atlantic and Mediterranean grassland systems (both organic and/or low-input), rain fed organic farms under temperate and Mediterranean conditions, mixed organic farming, organic special crops and low-input tree/agroforestry systems. Plot, farm and regional scales (where applicable) will be addressed. The investigation will include new agricultural practices, e.g. soil conservation, crop rotation management, seed and crop mixtures and economic issues relating to the costs of indicator measurement and to benefits of biodiversity as perceived by different groups of the population. Stakeholders (farming communities, conservation NGOs, administrators) will be integrated at critical stages of the indicator selection process. A handbook with factsheets will be produced for validated indicators and a sampling design for biodiversity monitoring in organic and low-input farming systems across Europe.
Mahecha M.D.,Max Planck Institute For Biogeochemie |
Mahecha M.D.,ETH Zurich |
Reichstein M.,Max Planck Institute For Biogeochemie |
Jung M.,Max Planck Institute For Biogeochemie |
And 10 more authors.
Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences | Year: 2010
Terrestrial biosphere models are indispensable tools for analyzing the biosphere-atmosphere exchange of carbon and water. Evaluation of these models using site level observations scrutinizes our current understanding of biospheric responses to meteorological variables. Here we propose a novel model-data comparison strategy considering that CO2 and H 2O exchanges fluctuate on a wide range of timescales. Decomposing simulated and observed time series into subsignals allows to quantify model performance as a function of frequency, and to localize model-data disagreement in time. This approach is illustrated using site level predictions from two models of different complexity, Organizing Carbon and Hydrology in Dynamic Ecosystems (ORCHIDEE) and Lund-Potsdam-Jena (LPJ), at four eddy covariance towers in different climates. Frequency-dependent errors reveal substantial model-data disagreement in seasonal-annual and high-frequency net CO2 fluxes. By localizing these errors in time we can trace these back, for example, to overestimations of seasonal-annual periodicities of ecosystem respiration during spring greenup and autumn in both models. In the same frequencies, systematic misrepresentations of CO2 uptake severely affect the performance of LPJ, which is a consequence of the parsimonious representation of phenology. ORCHIDEE shows pronounced model-data disagreements in the high-frequency fluctuations of evapotranspiration across the four sites. We highlight the advantages that our novel methodology offers for a rigorous model evaluation compared to classical model evaluation approaches. We propose that ongoing model development will benefit from considering model-data (dis)agreements in the time-frequency domain. Copyright 2010 by the American Geophysical Union.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: SPA.2010.1.1-06 | Award Amount: 1.20M | Year: 2011
The land surface is a decisive factor regarding the state of the environment and human well-being. To manage it well, regularly obtained up do date information on land use and land cover is needed. Land monitoring provides this information through thematic maps based on the interpretation of areal photography, satellite imagery and further sources. These maps aid spatial planning, nature protection, agricultural policy, forestry, water catchment area management, etc. In spite of its importance, land monitoring in Europe is quite inefficient owing to lacking coordination between the national, sub-national, and European levels. Efforts are duplicated and given opportunities for mutual support are not utilised which means a substantial waste of resources. HELM is a network of authorities concerned with land monitoring across Europe. It will initiate a move to increase the maturity of European land monitoring along five sequential steps: (1) mutual interest in achieving reciprocal knowledge, (2) shared visions and planning for the future, (3) joint activities by taking on tasks collectively, (4) alignment of national systems involving the mutual adaptation of data interpretation methods and of the timing of data gathering, (5) lasting integration and combining data across all administrative levels. HELM envisions a coherent European land monitoring system characterised by high quality data and efficient productivity. This system will combine the broad range of specific expertise and resources of relevant authorities in the member states. Their work will be supported through targeted centrally supplied measures fulfilling common requirements for raw data and data processing. Through a continuous flow of knowledge from the local to the European scale and the other way round, future information needs regarding land use and land cover will be met as an essential basis for managing the land surface in the framework of European sustainable development.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ISIB-04a-2014 | Award Amount: 5.00M | Year: 2015
Europes bioeconomy is expected to foster economic growth and to tackle significant societal challenges with less harmful environmental effects through innovative, sustainable and inclusive use of European forest resources. Increasing demand for biomass and other ecosystem goods and services calls for changes in forest-related policies at different levels and across different sectors. Accordingly, the recent Forest Strategy provides clear signals towards the need for harmonised information for mapping and assessing the dynamic state of forest ecosystems and their services. Building upon scientific advances in COST E4, 39, 43, USEWOOD, FORSYS, ORCHESTRA; the networks ENFIN, EFFIS, SOSIN; the FP7 EUFODOS, S2BIOM, INTEGRAL, SIMWOOD, FIRE PARADOX the project DIABOLO aims to: i) strengthen the methodological framework towards more accurate, harmonised and timely forest information, e.g. on growing stock and stock changes, biomass, carbon, NWFP; enable the analysis of sustainable biomass supply derived from multipurpose and multisource national forest inventories; and facilitate near real-time forest disturbance monitoring, e.g. on forest fires, storm, drought, insect outbreaks; ii) support EU policy processes, international reporting obligations, forest administration and forest planning entities with new methodologies and EU-wide consistent forest information; iii) make innovative use of existing field-collected data and EC space-based applications of EO and satellite positioning systems with reference to INSPIRE and GEOSS, and global monitoring systems such as REDD\, FLEGT and UNFF. To deliver high impact, beyond state-of-the-art work within the ecological and socio-economic diversity in Europe, the trans-disciplinary DIABOLO involves experts in quantitative modelling, policy science and NFIs, from 26 European countries, committed to provide new methodologies and information for various end-uses, including EFDAC (FISE) at JRC, GLOBIOM at IIASA and work at FAO/UNECE.
Mahecha M.D.,Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry |
Mahecha M.D.,ETH Zurich |
Furst L.M.,Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry |
Furst L.M.,University of Bayreuth |
And 2 more authors.
Pattern Recognition Letters | Year: 2010
Information retrieval from spatiotemporal data cubes is key to earth system sciences. Respective analyses need to consider two fundamental issues: First, natural phenomena fluctuate on different time scales. Second, these characteristic temporal patterns induce multiple geographical gradients. Here we propose an integrated approach of subsignal extraction and dimensionality reduction to extract geographical gradients on multiple time scales. The approach is exemplified using global remote sensing estimates of photosynthetic activity. A wide range of partly well interpretable gradients is retrieved. For instance, well known climate-induced anomalies in FAPAR over Africa and South America during the last severe ENSO event are identified. Also, the precise geographical patterns of the annual-seasonal cycle and its phasing are isolated. Other features lead to new questions on the underlying environmental dynamics. Our method can provide benchmarks for comparisons of data cubes, model runs, and thus be used as a basis for sophisticated model performance evaluations. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: EeB-01-2014 | Award Amount: 6.32M | Year: 2015
The ISOBIO project will develop a new approach to insulating materials through the novel combination of existing bio-derived aggregates with low embodied carbon with innovative binders to produce durable composite construction materials. These novel composites will target 50% lower embodied energy and carbon than traditional oil based insulation panels, and will increase thermal insulation compared with traditional systems by at least 20%. By using bio-based materials, using vertical integration from raw material production through to finished systems, the ISOBIO project aims to reduce costs by at least 15% over traditional systems. The use of bio-based materials ensures that whole life energy use is reduced through taking advantage of the photosynthesis of atmospheric carbon which is sequestered in the fabric of the building for its lifetime. The ISOBIO materials take advantage of the natural moisture sorption/desorption characteristics of bio-based materials, which is known to passively manage the indoor environment resulting in greatly improved indoor air and environmental quality, whilst at the same time reducing the demand for air conditioning.
Ducey M.J.,University of New Hampshire |
Astrup R.,Norsk Institutt for Skog og Landskap |
Seifert S.,TU Munich |
Pretzsch H.,TU Munich |
And 3 more authors.
Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing | Year: 2013
Terrestrial lidar (TLS) is an emerging technology for deriving forest attributes, including conventional inventory and canopy characterizations. However, little is known about the influence of scanner specifications on derived forest parameters. We compared two TLS systems at two sites in British Columbia. Common scanning benchmarks and identical algorithms were used to obtain estimates of tree diameter, position, and canopy characteristics. Visualization of range images and point clouds showed clear differences, even though both scanners were relatively high-resolution instruments. These translated into quantifiable differences in impulse penetration, characterization of stems and crowns far from the scan location, and gap fraction. Differences between scanners in estimates of effective plant area index were greater than differences between sites. Both scanners provided a detailed digital model of forest structure, and gross structural characterizations (including crown dimensions and position) were relatively robust; but comparison of canopy density metrics may require consideration of scanner attributes. © 2013 American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing.
Popescu C.-M.,Petru Poni Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry |
Hill C.A.S.,Norsk Institutt for Skog og Landskap |
Hill C.A.S.,JCH Industrial Ecology Ltd |
Curling S.,Bangor University |
And 2 more authors.
Journal of Materials Science | Year: 2014
The water vapour sorption isotherms and sorption kinetics of birch (Betula pendula L) acetylated to different levels have been determined using a dynamic vapour sorption (DVS) apparatus. A DVS instrument was also used to determine the accessible hydroxyl content in the wood samples using deuterium exchange. The results are reported in terms of the reduced equilibrium moisture content (EMCR), in which the moisture content per unit mass of wood substance is used for the calculation. As the level of acetylation of the wood samples increased there was a corresponding reduction in EMCR of the wood samples, which was accompanied by a decrease in hysteresis in the same order. The sorption kinetics were also determined using the DVS and analysed using the parallel exponential kinetics model, in which the sorption kinetics curve is composed of two processes (labelled fast and slow). Using this analysis, it is possible to calculate two pseudo-isotherms associated with the two processes. The sorption isotherm is a composite of the sorption isotherms associated with the fast process water and the slow process water and there are significant differences in behaviour between the two. It is suggested in this paper that the fast process is related to diffusion limited kinetics, whereas the slow process is a relaxation-limited phenomenon. The reduction in accessible OH content due to acetylation was well correlated with the weight gain due to acetylation, although the relationship did not exactly correspond with that theoretically determined. © Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013.
Rolstad J.,Norsk Institutt for Skog og Landskap |
Rolstad E.,Skogfaglig Radgivning
Blyttia | Year: 2011
The red-listed epiphytic lichen Evernia divaricata has only rarely been found with fruiting or sorediate thalli and, until recently, not in Norway. In August 2009, we revisited a previously known locality within the TrillemarkaRollagsfjell nature reserve and found, for the first time in Norway, abundant fertile thalli along a 1.2 km stretch of a small brook. Closer examination of samples taken from the same locality in 2003 revealed that immature fruiting-bodies (apothecia) were present on a few thalli at that time. Today the site is characterized by old mixed conifer forest and small bogs. Two additional Norwegian localities have been found to harbour fertile E. divaricata. At yet another locality we found one thallus with abundant large soralia, also recorded for the first time in Norway. Lack of small sprouting thalli with basal holdfasts suggests that dispersal, until now, has mainly occurred by means of thallus fragmentation, thereby hampering efficient long-distance dispersal.