The project addresses the acclimation and adaptation capacity of Betula species. The research proposed is timely within the context of climate and land use change and findings would be scientifically significant and practically useful. The research plan is excellent, novel and feasible. Especially the combination of novel questions and state of the art and novel techniques is valuable. The new common garden and development of spectromics techniques are likely to promote further research in the field in the future.
New knowledge from novel experimental, state-of-the-art molecular-genetic and spectral photonic approaches would be generated of relevance to mitigation/acclimation ecology and forestry. This represents a multidisciplinary approach, which could thus lead to new scientific innovation and important outcomes for future Arctic silviculture/economics. The execution of a combination of manipulation and ‘space-for-climate’ experiments with some pest control treatments will allow to disentangle the direct and indirect effects (e.g. ecological, nutrient changes, pests et cetera) of climate change. The potential for breakthrough understanding about the relationship between genotypes, traits and adaptive capacity is significant – with wider relevance to other plant species globally across biomes that are under growing pressure from climate change.