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Interaction between pollution and climate change augments ecological risk to a coastal ecosystem

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journal contribution
posted on 2018-07-31, 20:45 authored by Yonglong Lu, Ruoshi Wang, Yajuan Shi, Chao Su, Jingjing Yuan, Andrew C. Johnson, Alan Jenkins, Robert C. Ferrier, Deliang Chen, Hanqin Tian, Jerry Melillo, Shuai Song, Aaron M. Ellison

Pollution and climate change are among the most challenging issues for countries with developing economies, but we know little about the ecological risks that result when these pressures occur together. We explored direct effects of, and interactions between, environmental pollution and climate change on ecosystem health in the Bohai Sea region of Northern China. We developed an integrated approach to assess ecological risks to this region under four scenarios of climate change. Although ecological risks to the system from pollution alone have been declining, interactions between pollution and climate change have enhanced ecological risks to this coastal/marine ecosystem. Our results suggest that current policies focused strictly on pollution control alone should be changed to take into account the interactive effects of climate change so as to better forecast and manage potential ecological risks.

Funding

This study was supported by the National Key R & D Program of China (2017YFC0505704), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41420104004 and No. 71761147001), the Key Project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant No. KFZD-SW-322), and the Key Technology R&D Program of Tianjin (16YFXTSF00380).

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