ORNL part of new project to study how tropical forests worldwide respond to climate change

Apr 01, 2015
The future of tropical rainforests in the Amazon (pictured) and worldwide is teh focus of a new research project that combines field experiments and predictive modeling.

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., April 1, 2015—Researchers from the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory will play key roles in an expansive new project that aims to bring the future of tropical forests and the climate system into much clearer focus by coupling field research with the development of a new ecosystem model. The project is called the Next Generation Ecosystem Experiments-Tropics, or NGEE-Tropics.

Its goal is the development of a model that represents how tropical forests interact with Earth’s climate in much greater ecological detail than ever before. This will help scientists explore, more accurately than is possible today, how rising temperatures, shifting precipitation patterns, increasing greenhouse gas levels, and other natural and human-induced changes affect tropical forests’ influence on Earth’s climate.