Reviews and syntheses: influences of landscape structure and land uses on local to regional climate and air quality

Massad, Raia Silvia; Lathière, Juliette; Strada, Susanna; Perrin, Mathieu; Personne, Erwan; Stéfanon, Marc; Stella, Patrick; Szopa, Sophie; de Noblet-Ducoudré, Nathalie

The atmosphere and the land surface interact in multiple ways, for instance through the radiative-energy balance, the water cycle or the emission and deposition of natural and anthropogenic compounds. By modifying the land surface, land use and land cover changes (LULCCs) and land management changes (LMCs) alter the physical, chemical, and biological processes of the biosphere and therefore all land–atmosphere interactions, from local to global scales. Through socio-economic drivers and regulatory policies adopted at different levels (local, regional, national, or supranational), human activities strongly interfere in the land–atmosphere interactions, and those activities lead to a patchwork of natural, semi-natural, agricultural, urban, and semi-urban areas. In this context, urban and peri-urban areas, which have a high population density, are of particular attention since land transformation can lead to important environmental impacts and affect the health and life of millions of people. The objectives of this review are to synthesize the existing experimental and modelling works that investigate physical, chemical, and/or biogeochemical interactions between land surfaces and the atmosphere, therefore potentially impacting local/regional climate and air quality, mainly in urban or peri-urban landscapes at regional and local scales.

The conclusions we draw from our synthesis are the following. (1) The adequate temporal and spatial description of land use and land management practices (e.g. areas concerned, type of crops, whether or not they are irrigated, quantity of fertilizers used and actual seasonality of application) necessary for including the effects of LMC in global and even more in regional climate models is inexistent (or very poor). Not taking into account these characteristics may bias the regional projections used for impact studies. (2) Land–atmosphere interactions are often specific to the case study analysed; therefore, one can hardly propose general solutions or recommendations. (3) Adaptation strategies, proposed after climatic impacts on the targeted resource have been derived, are often biased as they do not account for feedbacks on local/regional climate. (4) There is space for considering atmospheric chemistry, through land–atmosphere interactions, as a factor for land management, helping to maintain air quality and supporting ecosystem functioning. (5) There is a lack of an integrated tool, which includes the many different processes of importance in an operational model, to test different land use or land management scenarios at the scale of a territory.



Massad, Raia Silvia / Lathière, Juliette / Strada, Susanna / et al: Reviews and syntheses: influences of landscape structure and land uses on local to regional climate and air quality. 2019. Copernicus Publications.


Rechteinhaber: Raia Silvia Massad et al.

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