TWP1.5. Climed Observatory

Biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in the Mediterranean The aim of CLIMED (CLImate change effects on MEDiterranean biodiversity and consequences for ecosystem functioning, ANR CEPS 2010-2014) (IMBE/IMBE in collaboration of CEFE, And ENSAIA, Montpellier) is to link predicted climate change scenarios to biodiversity loss, and to quantify the direct and indirect effects on carbon and nutrient cycling in the garrigue ecosystem. This project aims at linking predicted global change scenarios to changes in biodiversity across multiple trophic levels, and to quantify their feedback on ecosystem functioning using experimental approaches. The model system is the Mediterranean garrigue ecosystem (Chaîne de l’Etoile, Marseille) for which climate change, and decreasing precipitation in particular, is the major predicted threat to biodiversity. With experimental rain exclusion in the field, climate change effects on Mediterranean biodiversity and ecosystem functioning are investigated for plant production, physiology, soil biota and processes related to the carbon cycle and nutrient dynamics, and the plant interactions with microorganisms, mesofauna and macrofauna. As such this project is contributing to fundamental research on the underlying mechanisms of altered process rates in response to biodiversity changes, but within a realistic framework of climate change responsible for a loss of functional diversity. The functional trait-based characterization of soil biodiversity should provide a synthetic and relatively easy-to-apply tool for the assessment of soil biodiversity and the prediction of rates of key ecosystem processes. This experimental test lays the ground for data-based risk assessments of Mediterranean ecosystems.