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Tian H.,Auburn University | Lu C.,Auburn University | Yang J.,Auburn University | Banger K.,Auburn University | And 25 more authors.
Global Biogeochemical Cycles | Year: 2015

Soil is the largest organic carbon (C) pool of terrestrial ecosystems, and C loss from soil accounts for a large proportion of land-atmosphere C exchange. Therefore, a small change in soil organic C (SOC) can affect atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration and climate change. In the past decades, a wide variety of studies have been conducted to quantify global SOC stocks and soil C exchange with the atmosphere through site measurements, inventories, and empirical/process-based modeling. However, these estimates are highly uncertain, and identifying major driving forces controlling soil C dynamics remains a key research challenge. This study has compiled century-long (1901-2010) estimates of SOC storage and heterotrophic respiration (Rh) from 10 terrestrial biosphere models (TBMs) in the Multi-scale Synthesis and Terrestrial Model Intercomparison Project and two observation-based data sets. The 10 TBM ensemble shows that global SOC estimate ranges from 425 to 2111Pg C (1Pg=1015g) with a median value of 1158Pg C in 2010. The models estimate a broad range of Rh from 35 to 69PgCyr-1 with a median value of 51PgCyr-1 during 2001-2010. The largest uncertainty in SOC stocks exists in the 40-65°N latitude whereas the largest cross-model divergence in Rh are in the tropics. The modeled SOC change during 1901-2010 ranges from -70Pg C to 86Pg C, but in some models the SOC change has a different sign from the change of total C stock, implying very different contribution of vegetation and soil pools in determining the terrestrial C budget among models. The model ensemble-estimated mean residence time of SOC shows a reduction of 3.4years over the past century, which accelerate C cycling through the land biosphere. All the models agreed that climate and land use changes decreased SOC stocks, while elevated atmospheric CO2 and nitrogen deposition over intact ecosystems increased SOC stocks-even though the responses varied significantly among models. Model representations of temperature and moisture sensitivity, nutrient limitation, and land use partially explain the divergent estimates of global SOC stocks and soil C fluxes in this study. In addition, a major source of systematic error in model estimations relates to nonmodeled SOC storage in wetlands and peatlands, as well as to old C storage in deep soil layers. ©2015. The Authors. Source

Anav A.,University of Exeter | Friedlingstein P.,University of Exeter | Beer C.,University of Stockholm | Ciais P.,Laboratoire Des Science Du Climat Et Of Lenvironnement Gif Sur Yvette France | And 11 more authors.
Reviews of Geophysics | Year: 2015

Great advances have been made in the last decade in quantifying and understanding the spatiotemporal patterns of terrestrial gross primary production (GPP) with ground, atmospheric, and space observations. However, although global GPP estimates exist, each data set relies upon assumptions and none of the available data are based only on measurements. Consequently, there is no consensus on the global total GPP and large uncertainties exist in its benchmarking. The objective of this review is to assess how the different available data sets predict the spatiotemporal patterns of GPP, identify the differences among data sets, and highlight the main advantages/disadvantages of each data set. We compare GPP estimates for the historical period (1990-2009) from two observation-based data sets (Model Tree Ensemble and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) to coupled carbon-climate models and terrestrial carbon cycle models from the Fifth Climate Model Intercomparison Project and TRENDY projects and to a new hybrid data set (CARBONES). Results show a large range in the mean global GPP estimates. The different data sets broadly agree on GPP seasonal cycle in terms of phasing, while there is still discrepancy on the amplitude. For interannual variability (IAV) and trends, there is a clear separation between the observation-based data that show little IAV and trend, while the process-based models have large GPP variability and significant trends. These results suggest that there is an urgent need to improve observation-based data sets and develop carbon cycle modeling with processes that are currently treated either very simplistically to correctly estimate present GPP and better quantify the future uptake of carbon dioxide by the world's vegetation. © 2015. The Authors. Source

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