tree death — mentions Lake Clifton but refers to deaths around the world

Climate change is here…


Something has changed too, for the Tuart trees. At Lake Clifton, south of Perth, their twisted skeletons rise through the peppermint groves. These ones died in the 1990s. In other areas, they are failing to fruit, and the species’ seed bank is drastically declining.

Prof Giles Hardy

Again, we don’t fully understand what’s driving these declines, but in some areas we’re losing a hundred per cent of the trees.


Despite many different ailments, there is one obvious common stressor that could explain why so many trees are dying. They are facing higher temperatures with less water. The south-west of Western Australia has lost fifteen per cent of its rainfall in the past few decades. Average temperatures have increased by just over half a degree Celsius. Heatwaves have become longer, more frequent, and more intense.

Prof Giles Hardy

We haven’t seen such scale of damage in the last fifty, sixty years, probably in recorded history.

Dr Craig Allen

What’s most alarming is that these die-off events may be just the tip of the iceberg. We know that warming, temperatures exacerbate tree mortality, and the climate predictions are that the world is going to get much warmer soon. Um, so we may be just at the very front edge of what could be wholesale mortality of the world’s forests – the forests that we know and care about today.


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