Biodiversity increases ecosystem functions underpinning a suite of services valued by society, including services provided by soils. To test whether, and how, future environments alter the relationship between biodiversity and multiple ecosystem functions, we measured grassland plant diversity effects on single soil functions and ecosystem multifunctionality, and compared relationships in four environments: ambient conditions, elevated atmospheric CO2, enriched N supply, and elevated CO2 and N in combination. Our results showed that plant diversity increased three out of four soil functions and, consequently, ecosystem multifunctionality. Remarkably, biodiversity-ecosystem function relationships were similarly significant under current and future environmental conditions, yet weaker with enriched N supply. Structural equation models revealed that plant diversity enhanced ecosystem multifunctionality by increasing plant community functional diversity, and the even provision of multiple functions. Conserving local plant diversity is therefore a robust strategy to maintain multiple valuable ecosystem services in both present and future environmental conditions.
All data generated or analyzed during this study are available in Supplementary File 3.
- Nico Eisenhauer
- Jes Hines
- Alfred Lochner
- Nico Eisenhauer
- Peter B Reich
- Peter B Reich
- Peter B Reich
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- Bernhard Schmid, University of Zurich, Switzerland
© 2018, Eisenhauer et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
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