Alpine grassland ecosystems not only provide important ecological services and functions such as biodiversity conservation, carbon storage and water resource regulation, but also provide critical ecosystem services such as pastoral production, cultural inheritance, tourism and recreation. In recent decades, some of these regions have experienced rapid climatic warming and changes in precipitation regimes. For example, an increase in precipitation has been reported in most parts of the Tibetan Plateau, however, a decrease in precipitation has been found in many other regions. Over the past 60 years, the annual mean air temperature on the Tibetan Plateau has increased at a rate of 0.37 °C per decade, notably higher than in any other area in China. Even minor disturbances to environments may substantially alter the processes, functions, or even patterns of alpine grassland ecosystems, whose responses to climatic changes and human activities have recently drawn significant interest and become a global concern.
The subject of this Research Topic is to elucidate the patterns, functions, processes, and mechanisms of alpine grassland ecosystems responding to changing environments (e.g. dynamics of temperature and precipitation, nitrogen deposition and extreme weather events, grazing, fencing and ecological projects, etc.). We invite papers from researchers to share new ideas, techniques, and findings about this subject from field experiments, large-scale transect surveys, alongside remote sensing products. These different types of studies will provide insight into how the changing environments influence the spatial-temporal patterns of alpine grassland ecosystems, regulate ecosystem functions and processes, and further affect the ecological security, which is key to predicting future trajectories of alpine grassland ecosystems under global environmental change. These studies will influence the future development of adaptive management practices for alpine grassland ecosystems under future environmental change.
We invite papers from researchers to share findings from field experiments, large-scale transect surveys, alongside remote sensing observations. In particular long-term research results are welcome. All manuscripts are encouraged to provide raw data and code for enhanced reproducibility. This Research Topic will mainly address the following scientific topics:
• Spatial-temporal patterns and drivers of alpine grassland ecosystem under the changing environment based on patch, landscape, or pixel based remote sensing observations.
• Variations of alpine ecosystem functions, and the response and feedback of ecological processes using long-term simulated experiment and large-scale transect survey.
• Exploring the mechanisms of alpine ecosystem dynamics using new analytical methods (e.g. artificial intelligence learning, network analysis, Bayes analysis and other data mining methods). Please note: There is a similar Research Topic focused on "Genetic Diversity and Genomic Insights into Physiological Adaptations of Grasses to Diverse Ecological Niches". Please ensure article submissions related to genomic insights are submitted here.