Summary of Key Findings
The alpine tundra domain occurs at altitude in the high mountains in Europe. It is an important reservoir of freshwater and provides habitat to unique species.
The natural climatic treeline is projected to gradually advance vertically upward with global warming and the domain would shrink by 84% of its present size in a 3°C warming scenario.
Limiting warming to 1.5°C could limit loss of alpine tundra to 48%. Adaptation is challenging because of the unique topographic, soil and climatic characteristics of high mountain systems.
Figure: Climatic treeline elevation for 16 mountain regions in Europe, currently, and in 1.5, 2 and 3°C warming scenarios. White lines group impacts for each region. Solid and dotted lines show best regression fit for each scenario.