9th ICP Forests Scientific Conference | WSL, Birmensdorf, Switzerland | 8 -10 June 2020

Forest Monitoring to assess Forest Functioning under Air Pollution and Climate Change

Climate change and air pollution affect forest ecosystems in many different ways. Drought periods, as the one in 2018, strongly reduce tree growth and increase tree mortality in Europe and elsewhere. At the same time, elevated air pollution affect forests from the leaf to ecosystem level. While societies’ expectations to forests are increasing and forests have become focal points for local, national and global interests, the provision of ecosystem services such as timber production, water purification, and carbon sequestration is more and more endangered. To address the impact of global change on forest ecosystems and their resilience, long-term data series are indispensable to evaluate status, trends and processes in forest ecosystems.

Three decades of monitoring effects from air pollution within the International Co-operative Programme on Assessment and Monitoring of Air Pollution Effects on Forests (ICP Forests) under the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (Air Convention) have provided a harmonized and standardized asset of long-term data series which allows scientists, stakeholders and policy makers to address the status and predict the fate of European forest ecosystems and their functioning in a changing environment.

The goal of the 9th ICP Forests Scientific Conference 2020 is - on the one hand - to highlight the extensive ICP Forests data series on forest growth, phenology and leaf area index, biodiversity and ground vegetation, foliage and litter fall, ambient air quality, deposition, meteorology, soil and crown condition. We combine novel modeling and assessment approaches and integrate long-term trends to assess air pollution and climate effects on European forests and related ecosystem services. Latest results and conclusions from local scale to European scale studies will be presented and discussed.

The 9th ICP Forests Scientific Conference will be from 8-10 June 2020 followed by the 36th Task Force Meeting of ICP Forests, taking place on 11-12 June 2020 at the Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL in Birmensdorf nearby Zurich, Switzerland and by a Post-Conference Excursion from 12-13 June 2020 in the Swiss Alps.

The 2020 Summer School on the same topic “Forest Monitoring to assess Forest Functioning under Air Pollution and Climate Change”, taking place on 23-29 August 2020 in Davos, Switzerland will complement the 9th ICP Forests Scientific Conference. The 2020 Summer School will be supported by ICP Forests, The SwissForestLab and the European Network for Forest Research and higher Education NFZ.forest.net. Students and young scientists are provided an insight into the data treasure of ICP Forests and will take advantage of in-depth lectures by renowned scientists on selected topics concerning long-term forest ecosystem research.