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Climate Change Effects on Properties of Arctic Special Plants

Uleberg, Eivind, Akhtulova, Elena, Gontar, Oksana, Hannukkala, Antti, Manninen, Outi, Martinussen, Inger, Mikhaylova, Irina, Sturite, Ievina, Zhirov, Vladimir, Peltola, Rainer
Procedia Environmental Sciences 2015 v.29 pp. 137-138
Allium ursinum, Arnica montana, Bergenia crassifolia, Gulf Stream, Petroselinum crispum, chemical composition, climate, climate change, cosmetics, cultivars, industry, temperature, Arctic region, Finland, Norway, Russia, Scandinavia
The rapid global climate change projected for the 21st century may cause adaptation challenges to biota throughout the world and is assumed to affect first and most dramatically in the Arctic. Due to extremities of arctic climate, several arctic plants have properties which are valuable to e.g. food, medical and cosmetics industries. It is proposed that an essential factor causing the distinctive physiological properties of arctic plants is the combination of low temperature and arctic light (24h day-lenght with unique electromagnetic spectrum). As global temperature rise, this unusual combination will change.The Nordic countries and the Kola Peninsula include several distinctive, separated local climate areas. The Rovaniemi region is an inland area on the border of the Arctic whereas Tromsø and Tjøtta regions have coastal climates warmed by the Gulf Stream. The Kola Peninsula is also inland but due to more northern location as compared to Rovaniemi, the local climate has more arctic characteristics. Our hypothesis was that the present local climate in the Rovaniemi region resembles future local climate in the Kola Peninsula and the Tromsø region, while present local climate in southern Finland (Mikkeli) resembles future local climate in the Rovaniemi region.Field trials located at six different sites; Mikkeli (61°N 27°E) and Rovaniemi (66°N 25°E) in Finland, Kirovsk (67°N 33°E) and Apatity (67°N 33°E) in Russia and Tromsø (69°N 18°E) and Tjøtta (65°N 12°E) in Norway were established in 2013. Five different plant species were tested in the fields; Russian originated clonal plants of Bergenia crassifolia, Arnica montana and Allium ursinum and seed populations of Russian cultivars of Avena sativa and Petroselinum crispum ssp. tuberosum (2014 only). Phenological characteristics were recorded over two years and chemical composition of selected plant parts were analysed after two years of growth and the effect of local climate evaluated.