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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Modeling Agricultural Outcomes In A Warmer, Wetter Vermont, Rachel Mason Jan 2019

Modeling Agricultural Outcomes In A Warmer, Wetter Vermont, Rachel Mason

Graduate College Dissertations and Theses

This thesis aimed to model agricultural outcomes that are important to Vermont dairy farms and their surrounding communities -- runoff, erosion, nitrogen and phosphorus losses, crop yields, and timeliness of farm operations -- under a set of possible future climates. The Agricultural Policy/Environmental eXtender (APEX) model was used for this work, and the models were calibrated using data from a project that measured most of these outcomes on a set of local farms. The model setup and calibration methodology is thoroughly documented and may be a useful starting point for others who are new to agricultural modeling.

Applied to two farms ...


Role Of Community Social Capital For Acute Food Security Following An Extreme Weather Event, Alana N. Chriest Jan 2017

Role Of Community Social Capital For Acute Food Security Following An Extreme Weather Event, Alana N. Chriest

Graduate College Dissertations and Theses

Worsening climate changes effects are predicted to increase the severity and frequency of extreme weather events (EWE), which can disrupt food systems, from the local to global level, and compromise community food security. In the rural U.S., food insecurity, poverty, low economic growth, and population loss are prevalent, and rural communities often lack the physical capital to bolster community resiliency to climate change adaptation. In 2011, Tropical Storm Irene (TS Irene) in Vermont was the most damaging EWE the state’s history. Severely damaged roads, infrastructure, homes, and land, rendered many rural towns isolated for up to several days ...


Quantifying Tree Response To Alterations In Pollution Deposition And Climate Change In The Northeastern Us, Alexandra M. Kosiba Jan 2017

Quantifying Tree Response To Alterations In Pollution Deposition And Climate Change In The Northeastern Us, Alexandra M. Kosiba

Graduate College Dissertations and Theses

Understanding tree physiological responses to climate change is critical for quantifying forest carbon, predicting species' range change, and forecasting growth trajectories. Continued increases in temperature could push trees into conditions to which they are ill adapted -- such as decreased depth of winter snow cover, altered water regimes, and a lengthened effective growing season. A complicating factor is that in the northeastern United States, climate change is occurring on a backdrop of acid deposition and land-use change. In this dissertation, I used three studies to investigate the spatiotemporal nuances of resultant tree and sapling physiology to environmental change.

First, I compared ...


Vermont Agricultural Resilience In A Changing Climate: An Investigation Of Farmer Perceptions Of Climate Change, Risk, And Adaptation, Rachel E. Schattman Jan 2016

Vermont Agricultural Resilience In A Changing Climate: An Investigation Of Farmer Perceptions Of Climate Change, Risk, And Adaptation, Rachel E. Schattman

Graduate College Dissertations and Theses

Climate change forecasts tell of significant challenges ahead for agrifood systems at all scales, from global to highly local. Farmers are often at the forefront of these challenges. How farmers perceive climate related risks, and the actions they take to protect or adapt their lives and livelihoods are therefore a critical area of inquiry. The purpose of this dissertation is to describe how farmers in Vermont, in the Northeastern U.S., think about climate change, and how their experiences and perceptions influence engagement with adaptation or mitigation activities. To this end, my research questions included: (1) what are farmers already ...


Integrating Management For Old-Growth Characteristics With Enhanced Carbon Storage Of Northern Hardwood-Conifer Forests, Sarah Eliot Ford Jan 2016

Integrating Management For Old-Growth Characteristics With Enhanced Carbon Storage Of Northern Hardwood-Conifer Forests, Sarah Eliot Ford

Graduate College Dissertations and Theses

Forest management practices emphasizing stand structural complexity are of interest across the northern forest region of the United States because of their potential to enhance carbon storage. Our research is nested within a long-term study evaluating how silvicultural treatments promoting late-successional forest characteristics affect aboveground biomass development in northern hardwood forests. We are testing the hypothesis that biomass development (carbon storage) will be greater in structural complexity enhancement (SCE) treatments when compared to conventional uneven-aged treatments. SCE treatments were compared against selection systems (single-tree and group) modified to retain elevated structure. Manipulations and controls were replicated across 2-hectare treatment units ...


The Impacts Of Multiple Anthropogenic Disturbances On The Montane Forests Of The Green Mountains, Vermont, Usa, Carolyn Ann Pucko Jan 2014

The Impacts Of Multiple Anthropogenic Disturbances On The Montane Forests Of The Green Mountains, Vermont, Usa, Carolyn Ann Pucko

Graduate College Dissertations and Theses

How and why species’ ranges shift has long been a focus of ecology but is now becoming increasingly important given the current rate of climatic and environmental change. In response to global warming, species will need to migrate northward or upward to stay within their climatic tolerances. The ability of species to migrate will determine their fate and affect the community compositions of the future. However, to more accurately predict the future extent of species, we must identify and understand their responses to past and current climatic and environmental changes. The first place change is expected to occur is within ...