Volume 9

  • No. 12 December 2019

    Land wind-speed and energy production

    Wind power production from turbines, such as those shown on the cover standing on mountains in China, plays an important role in moving us toward a sustainable energy future. However, power generation through wind may be limited due to decreased surface wind-speed, a phenomenon known as ‘global terrestrial stilling’. In this issue, Zhenzhong Zeng and colleagues report a reversal of this phenomenon, explore the potential mechanisms and investigate its implications for wind energy production.

    See Zeng et al.

  • No. 11 November 2019

    River flows driven by plant CO2 responses

    Climate change is expected to impact river flows globally through both precipitation responses to CO2 increases and plant-physiological changes that modify runoff, but the relative importance of these drivers for basin-wide hydrologic change remains uncertain. Here, using Earth System Model (ESM) experiments, Fowler et al. show that plant physiological responses to increased CO2, rather than atmospheric changes, are the primary drivers of mean, peak and low flows throughout the tropics.

    See Fowler et al.

  • No. 10 October 2019

    Ecoregion influences climate response

    American pikas (Ochotona princeps) are generalist mammalian herbivores that typically live in cool, moist, high-elevation rocky talus areas. Smith et al. show that the distribution of pikas in response to climate varies more strongly with respect to ecoregional context than to genetic affinity.

    See Beever et al. and Oldfather

  • No. 9 September 2019

    Wave climate projections

    Wind-generated waves, such as those shown on the cover shaping a sandy beach in Cape Town, South Africa, play a major role in coastal sea-level dynamics and shoreline change. Future changes to deepwater wave climate (height, frequency and direction) will likely affect approximately 50% of the world's coastlines, and could drive significant changes in coastal oceanic processes and hazards.

    See Morim et al.

  • No. 8 August 2019

    Decadal variability linked to climate sensitivity

    Climate change assessments often focus on maximum warming levels, with less attention paid to rate of change or variability about the trend. An investigation of the CMIP5 model ensemble shows that models with higher equilibrium climate sensitivity have greater temperature variability and also have a greater chance of super warming and hiatus periods

    See Nijsse et al.

  • No. 7 July 2019

    Primate vulnerability

    Nonhuman primates deliver important ecological benefits to tropical ecosystems, but human-induced climate change is a growing threat to their survival. A trait-based approach is used to assess the vulnerability of 607 primate taxa to cyclones and droughts, extreme climatic events that are expected to increase or intensify in the coming decades.

    See Ameca et al.

  • No. 6 June 2019

    Ghost forests

    Ghost forests, like the one on the Pacific coast in Neskowin, Oregon, USA, pictured on the cover, are created by the submergence of low-lying forest land and are one of the most striking illustrations of climate change impacts. In this issue, the physical and ecological mechanisms that influence sea-level driven land conversion of forests to marshes are reviewed, with a focus on the Atlantic coast of North America.

    See Kirwan and Gedan

  • No. 5 May 2019

    Combatting plastics emissions

    The life cycle greenhouse gas emissions from plastic products are expected to increase, and could represent a substantial portion of the global carbon budget by 2050 if current trends are followed. An analysis of mitigation strategies finds that, to keep emissions below the 2015 level, an aggressive strategy of decarbonizing energy infrastructure, improving recycling, adopting bio-based plastics and reduction in demand, is required.

    See Zheng and Suh

  • No. 4 April 2019

    Shallowing Southern Ocean aragonite

    The aragonite saturation horizon depth is an indicator of ocean acidification. Model projections show the emergence of a shallow horizon in the near future in the Southern Ocean, reducing the suitable habitat for surface-dwelling aragonitic organisms, such as the pteropod illustrated on the cover.

    See Lovenduski et al.

  • No. 3 March 2019

    Decreasing lake ice

    New research shows that extensive loss of lake ice cover, like that on the north shore of Lake Mendota, Wisconsin, United States (pictured on cover), will occur within the next generation with climatic warming. Loss of lake ice may decrease availability of freshwater, degrade water quality, reduce access to winter ice roads and limit winter recreation opportunities.

    See Sharma et al.

  • No. 2 February 2019

    Bluetongue transmission risk

    Sheep are severely affected by bluetongue, an insect-borne disease. In this issue, Jones and colleagues find the risk of bluetongue is set to expand northward under future climate conditions, with larger and longer outbreaks expected as this century progresses. Shown on the cover is a flock of mule sheep in the United Kingdom.

    See Jones et al.

  • No. 1 January 2019

    Consumer under-estimation of food emissions

    Adopting plant-based diets has the potential to reduce global GHG emissions. A study in this issue shows that consumers underestimate the GHG emissions associated with foods, but carbon labels that provide information on GHG emissions can promote the purchase of lower-emitting options.

    See Camilleri et al. and News & Views by Vandenberg and Nielsen