Centre Européen
de Recherche et d'Enseignement
des Géosciences de l'Environnement

Environmental Impacts: acidification, biodiversity, vegetation, societies and man

The climatic impact on environments and societies is an important axis addressed by the Climate team. At very long time scales, the influence of climates and global and regional paleogeography on hominoid dispersal and hominin evolution are studied through the acquisition of new data (pollens, phytoliths) and a combined meta-analysis of terrestrial faunal and floral data. These data are used to test paleoclimatic scenarios and maps and to calibrate ecological niche models at high spatial resolution (ANR HADOC 2017-2020 PI local D. Barboni; Tellus-Rift REACTIvE Project 2017-2018).


The impact of anthropization - with its oceanic corollary, acidification - on marine ecosystems is studied through the study of calcifying organisms at the global scale. In this framework, the calcification of coccolithophorids is assessed on a multi-decadal scale, with bi-monthly collections in the western Mediterranean started in 2012 coupled with particle traps positioned since 1996. Cultures of strains collected in the Mediterranean and Peru are monitored (controlled and measured) continuously under an automatic microscope (COCCACE / FRB-MEED project). The evaluation of the resilience of benthic ecosystems under hydro-sedimentary disturbance is addressed through the study of the recolonization dynamics of benthic foraminifera in the Cassidaigne canyon (OT-Med MORESCA project; PIs L. Licari & C. Grenz (MIO)). The response of planktonic foraminiferal faunas to recent changes is also analyzed through the development of a meta-analysis of calcareous plankton fisheries and the integration of proxies models coupled to global climate models (WG FORCIS Ot-Med; PIs T. de Garidel & X. Giraud).


Finally, given the Paris agreements (COP21) setting the threshold of global average temperature not to be exceeded (between 1.5 and 2°C), and following the IPCC's willingness to analyze the impact of these thresholds on Mediterranean and African ecosystems, a model/data approach is developed to investigate for the past the impact of climate on resources and human societies. Our approach takes into account the degree of adaptation and resilience of societies. The models used are coupled climate models, agro-systems models, forestry models, hydrological models and socio-economic multi-agent models (Labex OT-Med, MedECC, EUR Earth-Sentinel).