Environmental change

Lakes and rivers react extremely sensitively to climate change and environmental changes. As such, they act as an early warning system for global ecological change. Our long-term programmes at Lake Stechlin and the lake Müggelsee, as well as on the River Spree and the River Tagliamento in Italy document the consequences of this change. Data spanning several decades enables us to forecast how freshwaters will develop under certain scenarios. In the LakeLab, our globally unique experimental facility in Lake Stechlin, we simulate the impact that changing environmental conditions (e.g. extreme weather events or the increasing use of artificial lighting) have on lakes and aquatic organisms.

Vice versa, freshwaters also have an impact on climate change. They have the ability to store or release large quantities of greenhouse gases such as methane and carbon dioxide. We investigate which conditions influence these processes and what role is played by rivers, lakes and wetlands in the global carbon cycle.

Related News

press release

Cyanobacteria in water and on land identified as source of methane

Cyanobacteria produce relevant amounts of methane in oceans, inland waters and on land. Due to climate change, “Cyanobacteria blooms” increase in frequency and extent, amplifying the release of methane from inland waters and oceans to the atmosphere.
focus

Lakes under ice

The cold does not scare IGB researcher Georgiy Kirillin during his research trips. Born in Russia, Kirillin is fascinated by what happens under the ice cover of frozen lakes. A research story from Lapland.

Related Projects

IWRM Joint Research Project MoMo III

The MoMo III project works towards the development and implementation of an integrated water resources management (IWRM) for a Mongolian model region.
Contact person
Jürgen Hofmann
Vanessa Bremerich
Department
(Dept. 1) Ecohydrology
Start
06/2015
End
05/2018
Topic

AQUACOSM

The first network connecting freshwater and marine large experimental research infrastructures.
Contact person
Jens Christian Nejstgaard
Stella A. Berger
Katharina Makower
Department
(Dept. 3) Experimental Limnology
Start
01/2017
End
12/2020
Topic

GLANCE

Climate change affects not only air temperature and precipitation, but also our streams and rivers: water temperature is rising, river flow characteristics are changing, oxygen concentration is sinking, while nutrient concentrations increase. This is not without consequence for the plants and animals living in freshwaters.
Contact person
Sonja Jähnig
Department
(Dept. 2) Ecosystem Research
Start
08/2014
End
04/2020
Topic

Experts at IGB

Rita Adrian

Head of department
Working group
Long-term and climate impact research of lake ecosystems

Stella A. Berger

Research group leader
Working group
Experimental phytoplankton ecology

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