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Grasslands and Climate Change
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Book description

Grasslands are the most extensive terrestrial biome on Earth and are critically important for forage, biodiversity, and ecosystem services. This book brings together an international team of researchers to review scientific knowledge of the effects of climate change on world grasslands, a process we are only just starting to understand. Part I assesses how climate change will impact on the distribution of grasslands, as well as production, biogeochemical cycling and ecosystem services. Part II considers the consequences for the spread of invasive species, demographic change, trophic-level relationships, soil biota, and evolutionary change within grassland biodiversity. Part III proposes how ecologists can respond to climate change effects, focusing on grazing systems, cultural ecology, range management, and restoration. The concluding chapter sets grasslands in the context of the Anthropocene era and identifies the vital research and conservation needs for grassland ecosystems to remain environmentally sustainable under climate change.


'Grasslands and Climate Change highlights the many uncertainties around changes we will witness. There are unknowns at every level, including how much greenhouse gas will be released, what climatic changes this creates, and how plants animals and humans will respond. None of these factors exist in isolation, and we need many more studies of the interactions between climate variables in order to make accurate predictions … This book points out … [that] there have been many botched policy decisions for traditional grassland, and these must be understood if climate related interventions are to succeed.'

Rebecca Nesbit Source: The Biologist

'Gibson and Newman have done a great job in setting the scene in the introductory chapter, so that even those who are not ecologists or plant specialists can quickly and succinctly grasp the extent of grasslands, their importance especially to human health and wellbeing, and the likely threats from climate change before delving deeper in the following chapters.'

Sarah Brotherton Source: The Holocene

‘… the book is a must-have for ecologists and conservationists working with open landscapes, especially grasslands.’

Szabolcs Lengyel Source: Conservation Biology

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