Global validation of a process-based model on vegetation gross primary production using eddy covariance observations

Dan Liu, Wenwen Cai, Jiangzhou Xia, Wenjie Dong, Guangsheng Zhou, Yang Chen, Haicheng Zhang, Wenping Yuan
PloS One 2014, 9 (11): e110407
Gross Primary Production (GPP) is the largest flux in the global carbon cycle. However, large uncertainties in current global estimations persist. In this study, we examined the performance of a process-based model (Integrated BIosphere Simulator, IBIS) at 62 eddy covariance sites around the world. Our results indicated that the IBIS model explained 60% of the observed variation in daily GPP at all validation sites. Comparison with a satellite-based vegetation model (Eddy Covariance-Light Use Efficiency, EC-LUE) revealed that the IBIS simulations yielded comparable GPP results as the EC-LUE model. Global mean GPP estimated by the IBIS model was 107.50±1.37 Pg C year(-1) (mean value ± standard deviation) across the vegetated area for the period 2000-2006, consistent with the results of the EC-LUE model (109.39±1.48 Pg C year(-1)). To evaluate the uncertainty introduced by the parameter Vcmax, which represents the maximum photosynthetic capacity, we inversed Vcmax using Markov Chain-Monte Carlo (MCMC) procedures. Using the inversed Vcmax values, the simulated global GPP increased by 16.5 Pg C year(-1), indicating that IBIS model is sensitive to Vcmax, and large uncertainty exists in model parameterization.


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