Improving assessments of tropospheric ozone injury to Mediterranean montane conifer forests in California (USA) and Catalonia (Spain) with GIS models related to plant water relations

Shawn C. Kefauver, Josep Peñuelas, Susan L. Ustin

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The impacts of tropospheric ozone on conifer health in the Sierra Nevada of California, USA, and the Pyrenees of Catalonia, Spain, were measured using field assessments and GIS variables of landscape gradients related to plant water relations, stomatal conductance and hence to ozone uptake. Measurements related to ozone injury included visible chlorotic mottling, needle retention, needle length, and crown depth, which together compose the Ozone Injury Index (OII). The OII values observed in Catalonia were similar to those in California, but OII alone correlated poorly to ambient ozone in all sites. Combining ambient ozone with GIS variables related to landscape variability of plant hydrological status, derived from stepwise regressions, produced models with R 2 = 0.35, p = 0.016 in Catalonia, R 2 = 0.36, p < 0.001 in Yosemite and R 2 = 0.33, p = 0.007 in Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Parks in California. Individual OII components in Catalonia were modeled with improved success compared to the original full OII, in particular visible chlorotic mottling (R 2 = 0.60, p < 0.001). The results show that ozone is negatively impacting forest health in California and Catalonia and also that modeling ozone injury improves by including GIS variables related to plant water relations. Capsule: Models of ozone injury improve significantly when combining ambient ozone mixing ratios and field assessment of ozone impacts with GIS variables related to plant water relations. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)41-49
    JournalAtmospheric Environment
    Volume62
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2012

    Keywords

    • Air pollution
    • Bioindicator
    • California
    • Catalonia
    • GIS
    • Mediterranean
    • Ozone
    • Ozone Injury Index
    • Pinus jeffreyi
    • Pinus ponderosa
    • Pinus uncinata

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