Seminar by Dr. Yasemin Ergüner

17/06/2019 11:00

Multivariate Representation of Ecoregions Under Changing Climate: a case study from the biological 'crossroads' of three continents, Turkey
The use of climate model outputs is essential for studying ecological responses to climate change and their use in ecological sciences is growing, yet drawing ecological interpretations is often a challenge. It requires integration of ecological understanding of spatial dynamics with climate model projections using data mining and big data computation techniques. This talk will present a pioneer ecological study upon which to base conservation planning under changing climate for Turkey.
Besides climate change vulnerability, most ecosystems are under threat from a history of improper land-use and conservation policies, yet there is little existing long-term ecological research and monitoring infrastructure in Turkey to tackle current and future threats to biodiversity. For Turkey, now more than ever, it is essential to ensure the ecological responses over a broad range of spatio-temporal scales and to establish a national-scale ecological observatory in order to address the environmental challenges that will emerge under changing environments and climate. 
Dr. Yasemin Ergüner will explain the utility of 'ecoregion concept' applied with climate model outputs using multivariate spatio-temporal clustering technique to develop potential contemporary and future quantitative ecoregions for Turkey. Specifically, she will present a multivariate representation of ecoclimatic regions for Turkey at several levels of division, and map both their contemporary and projected future distributions under the SRES A2 emissions scenario, based on downscaled simulations of ECHAM5 model. Her study marks the first 'ecoregionalization' study for Turkey, allowing us to track the spatio-temporal shifts in ecoregions under climate change and to quantify the magnitude of change which can guide us when identifying most climate change-sensitive areas. For countries like Turkey, where large-scale ecological networks have not been established, using such quantitative methodology for delineation of optimal ecoclimatic regions, and for mapping environments at risk from climate change provides an invaluable perspective for conservation planning strategies, and a framework for a comprehensive ecological observatory network design.