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Effects Of Deforestation And Afforestation In The Central Part Of The East European Plain On Regional Weather Conditions

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Forest  vegetation   can affect  the climate  and weather  patterns  in multiple ways.  What are the main mechanisms  of such influence  and how the land-use and vegetation changes  may  affect  the  weather and  climate conditions in  different geographical  regions are still not quite clear.  In our study,  the possible impact of land use and forest cover changes  in the central part of the East European  plain on regional meteorological  conditions  was investigated  using the regional  COSMO model.  In  our modeling experiments we used two extreme land-use change scenarios imitating total deforestation and afforestation of experimental area located between  55° and 59оN and 28° and 37°E in the central part of the East-European  plain. Modeling  results conducted for  the year 2016 showed that deforestation   results  in increase of the temperature difference between summer and winter months by up to 0.6ºС and in reduction of the annual precipitation by 35 mm. On the contrary, afforestation leads  to decrease of the annual temperature  range by 0.3° С and to growth of annual precipitation by 15 mm. Moreover,  the deforestation  results  in higher  frequencies  of stronger  winds and lower number of fog events,  while the afforestation leads  to opposite effects.  Analysis of the Khromov and Gorchinsky indexes of continentality showed that the deforestation of the selected experimental area may lead to increase of the climate continentality in the study region, whereas the afforestation results in milder climate conditions.

About the Authors

Mikhail A. Nikitin
Hydrometeorological Research Center of Russian Federation
Russian Federation

Ekaterina V. Tatarinovich
Hydrometeorological Research Center of Russian Federation; Moscow State University
Russian Federation

Faculty of Geography, MSU.


Inna A. Rozinkina
Hydrometeorological Research Center of Russian Federation
Russian Federation

Andrei E. Nikitin
Hydrometeorological Research Center of Russian Federation
Russian Federation


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For citation:

Nikitin M.A., Tatarinovich E.V., Rozinkina I.A., Nikitin A.E. Effects Of Deforestation And Afforestation In The Central Part Of The East European Plain On Regional Weather Conditions. GEOGRAPHY, ENVIRONMENT, SUSTAINABILITY. 2019;12(2):259-272.

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ISSN 2071-9388 (Print)
ISSN 2542-1565 (Online)