Crown Capital Management Environmental News
Researchers from the University of Queensland looked at such effects on more than 100 eucalypt species, finding that some may be wiped out from increasingly extreme weather conditions.
The report was modelled on two temperature scenarios. The first scenario was for an increase of one degree by 2055 and an increase of just over two degrees by 2085.
The second, more extreme scenario, saw an increase of 1.5 and 2.5 degrees in those years respectively.
Professor Clive McAlpine from the University of Queensland says that currently, temperatures are tracking at the extreme end of the range, and without mitigation they will continue to do so.
AUDIO: Listen to Whitney Fitzsimmons's report (The World Today)
"We're basically locked into a warming of 3.5 to four degrees globally by the end of the century unless we can have some very aggressive mitigation to reduce greenhouse gas," Professor McAlpine said.
The study found that drought appears to be the biggest threat to gum trees, out of all the weather conditions it considered.
"They can't cope with moisture stress and when you combine heat stress and drought, that is when eucalypts start to die or their canopy deteriorates," Professor McAlpine said.
The fact that eucalyptus trees have long regeneration times, in combination with the short dispersal distances of their seeds, indicates that they may not be able to keep up with the pace of climate change.