Climate change drives expansion of Antarctic ice-free habitat

Lee, Jasmine R., Raymond, Ben, Bracegirdle, Thomas J., Chades, Iadine, Fuller, Richard A., Shaw, Justine D. and Terauds, Aleks (2017) Climate change drives expansion of Antarctic ice-free habitat. Nature, 547 7661: 49-54. doi:10.1038/nature22996

Author Lee, Jasmine R.
Raymond, Ben
Bracegirdle, Thomas J.
Chades, Iadine
Fuller, Richard A.
Shaw, Justine D.
Terauds, Aleks
Title Climate change drives expansion of Antarctic ice-free habitat
Journal name Nature   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1476-4687
Publication date 2017-07-01
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1038/nature22996
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 547
Issue 7661
Start page 49
End page 54
Total pages 6
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Nature Publishing Group
Language eng
Abstract Antarctic terrestrial biodiversity occurs almost exclusively in ice-free areas that cover less than 1% of the continent. Climate change will alter the extent and configuration of ice-free areas, yet the distribution and severity of these effects remain unclear. Here we quantify the impact of twenty-first century climate change on ice-free areas under two Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) climate forcing scenarios using temperature-index melt modelling. Under the strongest forcing scenario, ice-free areas could expand by over 17,000 km 2 by the end of the century, close to a 25% increase. Most of this expansion will occur in the Antarctic Peninsula, where a threefold increase in ice-free area could drastically change the availability and connectivity of biodiversity habitat. Isolated ice-free areas will coalesce, and while the effects on biodiversity are uncertain, we hypothesize that they could eventually lead to increasing regional-scale biotic homogenization, the extinction of less-competitive species and the spread of invasive species.
Keyword Biological Invasions
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Grant ID 4296
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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