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CR 41:91-104 (2010)  -  DOI:

Modelling the effects of land-cover changes on surface climate in the Mediterranean region

A. Anav1,2, P. M. Ruti2,*, V. Artale2, R. Valentini1

1Department of Forest Resources and Environment (DISAFRI), University of Tuscia, Viterbo, Italy
2Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA), Rome, Italy
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: We investigated the impact of land-cover changes on regional climate over the Euro-Mediterranean area. For this purpose, we compared a control simulation, which employs the present-day vegetation cover, with 2 different potential vegetation distributions performed with the regional climate model RegCM3 for the time period 1981–2000. The simulation results show how land-cover changes are able to modify both the thermodynamics and dynamics of the lower troposphere in central Europe, particularly during summer. Within some of the regions where land-cover change occurred, we found significant changes in heat fluxes, while weak changes were found in surface temperature and precipitation fields. Changes in vegetation composition modify the probability density function of the 2 m temperature, and hence land-cover changes may have a strong impact on extreme events.

KEY WORDS: Land-cover changes · Land–atmosphere interactions · Climate · Extreme events

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Cite this article as: Anav A, Ruti PM, Artale V, Valentini R (2010) Modelling the effects of land-cover changes on surface climate in the Mediterranean region. Clim Res 41:91-104.

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