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Fredh D.,Lund University | Brostrom A.,Lund University | Rundgren M.,Lund University | Lageras P.,Swedish National Heritage Board | And 2 more authors.
Biogeosciences | Year: 2013

This study explores the relationship between landuse and floristic diversity between 600BC and AD2008 in the uplands of southern Sweden. We use fossil pollen assemblages and the Regional Estimates of Vegetation Abundance from Large Sites (REVEALS) model to quantitatively reconstruct land cover at a regional scale. Floristic richness and evenness are estimated using palynological richness and REVEALS-based evenness, respectively. We focus on the period AD350 to 750 to investigate the impact of an inferred, short-lived (<200 yr) period of land-use expansion and subsequent land abandonment on vegetation composition and floristic diversity. The observed vegetation response is compared to that recorded during the transition from traditional to modern land-use management at the end of the 19th century. Our results suggest that agricultural land use was most widespread between AD350 and 1850, which correlates broadly with high values of palynological richness. REVEALS-based evenness was highest between AD500 and 1600 which indicates a more equal cover among taxa during this time interval. Palynological richness increased during the inferred land-use expansion after AD350 and decreased during the subsequent regression AD550-750, while REVEALS-based evenness increased throughout this period. The values of palynological richness during the last few decades are within the range observed during the last 1650 yr. However, REVEALS-based evenness shows much lower values during the last century compared to the previous ca. 2600 yr, which indicates that the composition of presentday vegetation is unusual in a millennial perspective. Our results show that regional scale changes in land use have had clear impacts on floristic diversity in southern Sweden, with a vegetation response time of less than 20 to 50 yr. We show the importance of traditional land use to attain high biodiversity and suggest that ecosystem management should include a regional landscape perspective. © Author(s) 2013.

de Jong R.,Lund University | de Jong R.,University of Bern | Lageras P.,Swedish National Heritage Board
Vegetation History and Archaeobotany | Year: 2011

To study the causes of agricultural declines in south-west Sweden, a multi-proxy study including pollen analysis, bog surface wetness indicators and aeolian sediment influx reconstructions was carried out on the Store Mosse Bog, situated on the coastal plain of Halland. Patterns of agricultural changes during the past 6,000 years from this study were compared to one additional site on the coastal plain (Undarsmosse Bog) and to four sites in the forested upland region. First, we compared land use activity on the coastal plain and in upland regions of south-west Sweden. Three periods with reduced agricultural activities were observed, primarily in records from the coastal plain. Next, the causes for these declines were studied by comparing land use indicators in the pollen records from the Store Mosse and Undarsmosse peat bogs to independent climatic reconstructions based on the same core material (past storm activity based on aeolian sediment influx onto the peat bogs; bog surface wetness reconstructed from organic bulk density measurements). Since the climatic reconstructions and pollen analysis were carried out on the same peat cores, a direct comparison between the timing of climatic events and land use changes was possible. Results indicate that climatic perturbations prior to ca. 1,000 years ago contributed to or possibly caused agricultural declines. The agricultural expansions near the Store Mosse and Undarsmosse bogs from 3000 to 2600 cal. yrs b. p. ended at the time when climatic proxy indicators recorded climatic instability (from ca 2600 to 2200 cal. yrs b. p.). The same sequence of events was recorded around 1500 cal. yrs b. p. and from 1200 to 1000 cal. yrs b. p., suggesting a climatic cause for these agricultural declines as well. The well-known climatic perturbations associated with the Little Ice Age, however, did not have a visible impact on agricultural activities. By this time, advances in land use knowledge and technology may have drastically diminished society's sensitivity to climatic changes. © 2010 Springer-Verlag.

Bjorklund J.A.,University of Stockholm | Thuresson K.,Swedish National Heritage Board | Cousins A.P.,IVL Swedish Environmental Reserach Institute Ltd | Sellstrom U.,University of Stockholm | And 2 more authors.
Environmental Science and Technology | Year: 2012

Ventilation of indoor air has been hypothesized to be a source of PBDEs to outdoors. To study this, tri-decabrominated diphenyl ethers were analyzed in outgoing air samples collected inside ventilation systems just before exiting 33 buildings and compared to indoor air samples from microenvironments in each building collected simultaneously. Median Σ10PBDE (BDE- 28, -47, -99, -153, -183, -197, -206, -207, -208, -209) concentrations in air from apartment, office and day care center buildings were 93, 3700, and 660 pg/m 3 for outgoing air, and 92, 4700, and 1200 pg/m3 for indoor air, respectively. BDE-209 was the major congener found. No statistically significant differences were seen for individual PBDE concentrations in matched indoor and outgoing air samples, indicating that outgoing air PBDE concentrations are equivalent to indoor air concentrations. PBDE concentrations in indoor and outgoing air were higher than published outdoor air values suggesting ventilation as a conduit of PBDEs, including BDE-209, from indoors to outdoors. BDE-209 and sum of BDE-28, -47, -99, and -153 emissions from indoor air to outdoors were roughly estimated to represent close to 90% of total emissions to outdoor air for Sweden, indicating that contaminated indoor air is an important source of PBDE contamination to outdoor air. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Trondman A.-K.,Linnaeus University | Gaillard M.-J.,Linnaeus University | Sugita S.,Tallinn University | Bjorkman L.,Viscum pollenanalys & miljohistoria | And 5 more authors.
Vegetation History and Archaeobotany | Year: 2016

In this paper we test the performance of the Regional Estimates of VEgetation Abundance from Large Sites (REVEALS) model using pollen records from multiple small sites. We use Holocene pollen records from large and small sites in southern Sweden to identify what is/are the most significant variable(s) affecting the REVEALS-based reconstructions, i.e. type of site (lakes and/or bogs), number of sites, site size, site location in relation to vegetation zones, and/or distance between small sites and large sites. To achieve this objective we grouped the small sites according to (i) the two major modern vegetation zones of the study region, and (ii) the distance between the small sites and large lakes, i.e. small sites within 50, 100, 150, or 200 km of the large lakes. The REVEALS-based reconstructions were performed using 24 pollen taxa. Redundancy analysis was performed on the results from all REVEALS-model runs using the groups within (i) and (ii) separately, and on the results from all runs using the groups within (ii) together. The explanatory power and significance of the variables were identified using forward selection and Monte Carlo permutation tests. The results show that (a) although the REVEALS model was designed for pollen data from large lakes, it also performs well with pollen data from multiple small sites in reconstructing the percentage cover of groups of plant taxa (e.g. open land taxa, summer-green trees, evergreen trees) or individual plant taxa; however, in the case of this study area, the reconstruction of the percentage cover of Calluna vulgaris, Cyperaceae, and Betula may be problematic when using small bogs; (b) standard errors of multiple small-site REVEALS estimates will generally be larger than those obtained using pollen records from large lakes, and they will decrease with increasing size of pollen counts and increasing number of small sites; (c) small lakes are better to use than small bogs if the total number of small sites is low; and (d) the size of small sites and the distance between them do not play a major role, but the distance between the small sites and landscape/vegetation boundaries is a determinant factor for the accuracy of the vegetation reconstructions. © 2015, The Author(s).

Berglund B.E.,Solvegatan | Kitagawa J.,International Research Center for Japanese Studies | Lageras P.,Swedish National Heritage Board | Nakamura K.,Kanazawa University | And 2 more authors.
Ambio | Year: 2014

Traditional, pre-industrial farming was adapted to the natural environment - topography, geology, hydrology, climate, and biota. Traditional land use systems are still to be traced in Scandinavia as an "infield/outland landscape", and in Japan as a "Satoyama landscape." There are obvious similarities and differences in land use - the main difference being that pasturing of cattle and sheep has been less important in Japan. These land use systems can be traced back to early sedentary settlements 1500-2500 years ago. In both regions, traditional management almost ceased in the mid-twentieth century leading to afforestation and decreased biological diversity. Today, there is in Japan a growing movement for landscape restoration and promotion of a sustainable living countryside based on local agrarian and forestry production, local energy, tourism, etc. With this background, the so-called Satoyama Initiative has been organized and introduced as a global socio-ecological project with ecosystem services for human well-being. © 2014 Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

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