A Review on Efficiency of Plants for Mitigation and Adaptation to Climate Change in Urban Ecosystems with Focusing on Plant Functional Traits

Document Type : Original Articles


1 PhD. of Plant Physiology, Faculty of Life Science, Tarbiat Modares University

2 PhD. Student in Agroecology, Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad

3 PhD. of Plant Ecosystematic, Faculty of Basic Science, University of Tehran


Climate change is usually attributed to natural phenomena or in response to anthropogenic activities. Fossil fuel combustion and emission of greenhouse gases accelerate climate change and global warming. There are two main strategies to face climate fluctuations: adaptation and mitigation. Among living organisms, plants exert numerous mitigating effects especially in urban areas. Important climate-related functions of plants; and hence urban green space, include cooling effect, pollution reduction, increasing energy use efficiency, absorption of UV and high energy radiations, reducing surface runoffs, soil maintenance, reducing wind speed, chemical air pollution and fine particles. The efficiency of plant taxa is a function of their morphological and physiological functional traits. This research comprehensively reviews relationships between plant mitigating functions in urban environments, functional traits and climate related management perspective of cities. Plant functional traits such as leaf surface morphology, plant size and height, density and distributional pattern, canopy shape and branching pattern along with life form and physiological properties are of utmost importance in mitigation and adaptability of plants to climate perturbations. We strongly recommend considering future perspective under climate change scenario and substitution of urban plant species based on functional traits as one of the management priorities for urban areas especially Tehran metropolis environment


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