The ClimGrass experiment

The ClimGrass experiment aims to analyze effects of warming, elevated CO2 and extreme climatic events on the productivity and biogeochemistry of a managed C3 grassland typical for many European mountain regions. The ClimGrass experiment follows a multifactor, multilevel approach combining three levels of warming (ambient, +1.5, + 3°C) and atmospheric CO2 (ambient, +150, +300 ppm), as well as precipitation manipulations involving automated rain-out shelters. The ClimGrass facility includes 54 plots arranged in a response surface design for warming and elevated CO2, combined with a factorial design testing effects of extreme droughts under current and future climate conditions.

The ClimGrass experiment is hosted at and operated by the agricultural research station AREC Raumberg-Gumpenstein and was designed by Markus Herndl and Erich Pötsch (AREC) jointly with Michael Bahn (University of Innsbruck), who also form the steering committee co-ordinating and overseeing the overall experimental activities.

The following specific research projects are currently being pursued at the ClimGrass facility:

1) ClimGrass: Grassland carbon dynamics in a changing climate (funded by FWF; 2016-2019) PI: M. Bahn (University of Innsbruck), Co-PIs: A. Richter and W. Wanek (University of Vienna)

2) ExtremeGrass - Interactive effects of warming, elevated CO2 and weather extremes on nitrogen gas fluxes in a managed grassland (funded by ACRP; 2016-2019) PI: S. Zechmeister-Boltenstern (University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna), Partners: M. Bahn (University of Innsbruck), M. Gorfer (Austrian Institute of Technology Vienna), M. Herndl (AREC Raumberg-Gumpenstein)

3) ClimGrassEco - Effects of climate change on productivity and climate regulation of grassland (funded by Austrian Ministry of Agriculture and the Provinces of Styria, Tyrol, Vorarlberg, Salzburg and Lower Austria; 2015-2016) PI: M. Bahn, partners: E. Pötsch, M. Herndl (AREC Raumberg-Gumpenstein)

>  Research Group Plant, Soil and Ecosystem Processes