Zhuang Qianlai

No Thumbnail Available
Last Name
First Name

Search Results

Now showing 1 - 20 of 22
  • Article
    Contrasting soil thermal responses to fire in Alaskan tundra and boreal forest
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2015-02-24) Jiang, Yueyang ; Rocha, Adrian V. ; O’Donnell, Jonathan A. ; Drysdale, Jessica A. ; Rastetter, Edward B. ; Shaver, Gaius R. ; Zhuang, Qianlai
    Recent fire activity throughout Alaska has increased the need to understand postfire impacts on soils and permafrost vulnerability. Our study utilized data and modeling from a permafrost and ecosystem gradient to develop a mechanistic understanding of the short- and long-term impacts of tundra and boreal forest fires on soil thermal dynamics. Fires influenced a variety of factors that altered the surface energy budget, soil moisture, and the organic-layer thickness with the overall effect of increasing soil temperatures and thaw depth. The postfire thickness of the soil organic layer and its impact on soil thermal conductivity was the most important factor determining postfire soil temperatures and thaw depth. Boreal and tundra ecosystems underlain by permafrost experienced smaller postfire soil temperature increases than the nonpermafrost boreal forest from the direct and indirect effects of permafrost on drainage, soil moisture, and vegetation flammability. Permafrost decreased the loss of the insulating soil organic layer, decreased soil drying, increased surface water pooling, and created a significant heat sink to buffer postfire soil temperature and thaw depth changes. Ecosystem factors also played a role in determining postfire thaw depth with boreal forests taking several decades longer to recover their soil thermal properties than tundra. These factors resulted in tundra being less sensitive to postfire soil thermal changes than the nonpermafrost boreal forest. These results suggest that permafrost and soil organic carbon will be more vulnerable to fire as climate warms.
  • Article
    Methane fluxes between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere at northern high latitudes during the past century : a retrospective analysis with a process-based biogeochemistry model
    (American Geophysical Union, 2008-08-18) Zhuang, Qianlai ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Prinn, Ronald G. ; McGuire, A. David ; Steudler, Paul A. ; Felzer, Benjamin S. ; Hu, Shaomin
    We develop and use a new version of the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM) to study how rates of methane (CH4) emissions and consumption in high-latitude soils of the Northern Hemisphere have changed over the past century in response to observed changes in the region's climate. We estimate that the net emissions of CH4 (emissions minus consumption) from these soils have increased by an average 0.08 Tg CH4 yr−1 during the twentieth century. Our estimate of the annual net emission rate at the end of the century for the region is 51 Tg CH4 yr−1. Russia, Canada, and Alaska are the major CH4 regional sources to the atmosphere, responsible for 64%, 11%, and 7% of these net emissions, respectively. Our simulations indicate that large interannual variability in net CH4 emissions occurred over the last century. Our analyses of the responses of net CH4 emissions to the past climate change suggest that future global warming will increase net CH4 emissions from the Pan-Arctic region. The higher net CH4 emissions may increase atmospheric CH4 concentrations to provide a major positive feedback to the climate system.
  • Article
    The impacts of recent permafrost thaw on land–atmosphere greenhouse gas exchange
    (IOP Publishing, 2014-04-06) Hayes, Daniel J. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; McGuire, A. David ; Chen, Min ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Yuan, Fengming ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Wullschleger, Stan D.
    Permafrost thaw and the subsequent mobilization of carbon (C) stored in previously frozen soil organic matter (SOM) have the potential to be a strong positive feedback to climate. As the northern permafrost region experiences as much as a doubling of the rate of warming as the rest of the Earth, the vast amount of C in permafrost soils is vulnerable to thaw, decomposition and release as atmospheric greenhouse gases. Diagnostic and predictive estimates of high-latitude terrestrial C fluxes vary widely among different models depending on how dynamics in permafrost, and the seasonally thawed 'active layer' above it, are represented. Here, we employ a process-based model simulation experiment to assess the net effect of active layer dynamics on this 'permafrost carbon feedback' in recent decades, from 1970 to 2006, over the circumpolar domain of continuous and discontinuous permafrost. Over this time period, the model estimates a mean increase of 6.8 cm in active layer thickness across the domain, which exposes a total of 11.6 Pg C of thawed SOM to decomposition. According to our simulation experiment, mobilization of this previously frozen C results in an estimated cumulative net source of 3.7 Pg C to the atmosphere since 1970 directly tied to active layer dynamics. Enhanced decomposition from the newly exposed SOM accounts for the release of both CO2 (4.0 Pg C) and CH4 (0.03 Pg C), but is partially compensated by CO2 uptake (0.3 Pg C) associated with enhanced net primary production of vegetation. This estimated net C transfer to the atmosphere from permafrost thaw represents a significant factor in the overall ecosystem carbon budget of the Pan-Arctic, and a non-trivial additional contribution on top of the combined fossil fuel emissions from the eight Arctic nations over this time period.
  • Preprint
    Importance of recent shifts in soil thermal dynamics on growing season length, productivity, and carbon sequestration in terrestrial high-latitude ecosystems
    ( 2005-10-07) Euskirchen, Eugenie ; McGuire, A. David ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Clein, Joy S. ; Dargaville, R. J. ; Dye, D. G. ; Kimball, John S. ; McDonald, Kyle C. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Romanovsky, Vladimir ; Smith, N. V.
    In terrestrial high-latitude regions, observations indicate recent changes in snow cover, permafrost, and soil freeze-thaw transitions due to climate change. These modifications may result in temporal shifts in the growing season and the associated rates of terrestrial productivity. Changes in productivity will influence the ability of these ecosystems to sequester atmospheric CO2. We use the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM), which simulates the soil thermal regime, in addition to terrestrial carbon, nitrogen and water dynamics, to explore these issues over the years 1960-2100 in extratropical regions (30°-90°N). Our model simulations show decreases in snow cover and permafrost stability from 1960 to 2100. Decreases in snow cover agree well with NOAA satellite observations collected between the years 1972-2000, with Pearson rank correlation coefficients between 0.58-0.65. Model analyses also indicate a trend towards an earlier thaw date of frozen soils and the onset of the growing season in the spring by approximately 2-4 days from 1988-2000. Between 1988 and 2000, satellite records yield a slightly stronger trend in thaw and the onset of the growing season, averaging between 5-8 days earlier. In both the TEM simulations and satellite records, trends in day of freeze in the autumn are weaker, such that overall increases in growing season length are due primarily to earlier thaw. Although regions with the longest snow cover duration displayed the greatest increase in growing season length, these regions maintained smaller increases in productivity and heterotrophic respiration than those regions with shorter duration of snow cover and less of an increase in growing season length. Concurrent with increases in growing season length, we found a reduction in soil carbon and increases in vegetation carbon, with greatest losses of soil carbon occurring in those areas with more vegetation, but simulations also suggest that this trend could reverse in the future. Our results reveal noteworthy changes in snow, permafrost, growing season length, productivity, and net carbon uptake, indicating that prediction of terrestrial carbon dynamics from one decade to the next will require that large-scale models adequately take into account the corresponding changes in soil thermal regimes.
  • Preprint
    An analysis of the carbon balance of the Arctic Basin from 1997 to 2006
    ( 2010-06-18) McGuire, A. David ; Hayes, Daniel J. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Manizza, Manfredi ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Chen, Min ; Follows, Michael J. ; Gurney, Kevin R. ; McClelland, James W. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Peterson, Bruce J. ; Prinn, Ronald G.
    This study used several model-based tools to analyze the dynamics of the Arctic Basin between 1997 and 2006 as a linked system of land-ocean-atmosphere C exchange. The analysis estimates that terrestrial areas of the Arctic Basin lost 62.9 Tg C yr-1 and that the Arctic Ocean gained 94.1 Tg C yr-1. Arctic lands and oceans were a net CO2 sink of 108.9 Tg C yr-1, which is within the range of uncertainty in estimates from atmospheric inversions. Although both lands and oceans of the Arctic were estimated to be CO2 sinks, the land sink diminished in strength because of increased fire disturbance compared to previous decades, while the ocean sink increased in strength because of increased biological pump activity associated with reduced sea ice cover. Terrestrial areas of the Arctic were a net source of 41.5 Tg CH4 yr-1 that increased by 0.6 Tg CH4 yr-1 during the decade of analysis, a magnitude that is comparable with an atmospheric inversion of CH4. Because the radiative forcing of the estimated CH4 emissions is much greater than the CO2 sink, the analysis suggests that the Arctic Basin is a substantial net source of green house gas forcing to the climate system.
  • Article
    Potential influence of climate-induced vegetation shifts on future land use and associated land carbon fluxes in Northern Eurasia
    (IOP Publishing, 2014-03-21) Kicklighter, David W. ; Cai, Y. ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Parfenova, E. I. ; Paltsev, Sergey ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Reilly, John M. ; Tchebakova, Nadja M. ; Lu, X.
    Climate change will alter ecosystem metabolism and may lead to a redistribution of vegetation and changes in fire regimes in Northern Eurasia over the 21st century. Land management decisions will interact with these climate-driven changes to reshape the region's landscape. Here we present an assessment of the potential consequences of climate change on land use and associated land carbon sink activity for Northern Eurasia in the context of climate-induced vegetation shifts. Under a 'business-as-usual' scenario, climate-induced vegetation shifts allow expansion of areas devoted to food crop production (15%) and pastures (39%) over the 21st century. Under a climate stabilization scenario, climate-induced vegetation shifts permit expansion of areas devoted to cellulosic biofuel production (25%) and pastures (21%), but reduce the expansion of areas devoted to food crop production by 10%. In both climate scenarios, vegetation shifts further reduce the areas devoted to timber production by 6–8% over this same time period. Fire associated with climate-induced vegetation shifts causes the region to become more of a carbon source than if no vegetation shifts occur. Consideration of the interactions between climate-induced vegetation shifts and human activities through a modeling framework has provided clues to how humans may be able to adapt to a changing world and identified the trade-offs, including unintended consequences, associated with proposed climate/energy policies.
  • Article
    Influence of changes in wetland inundation extent on net fluxes of carbon dioxide and methane in northern high latitudes from 1993 to 2004
    (IOP Science, 2015-09-10) Zhuang, Qianlai ; Zhu, Xudong ; He, Yujie ; Prigent, Catherine ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; McGuire, A. David ; Prinn, Ronald G. ; Kicklighter, David W.
    Estimates of the seasonal and interannual exchanges of carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) between land ecosystems north of 45°N and the atmosphere are poorly constrained, in part, because of uncertainty in the temporal variability of water-inundated land area. Here we apply a process-based biogeochemistry model to evaluate how interannual changes in wetland inundation extent might have influenced the overall carbon dynamics of the region during the time period 1993–2004. We find that consideration by our model of these interannual variations between 1993 and 2004, on average, results in regional estimates of net methane sources of 67.8 ± 6.2 Tg CH4 yr−1, which is intermediate to model estimates that use two static inundation extent datasets (51.3 ± 2.6 and 73.0 ± 3.6 Tg CH4 yr−1). In contrast, consideration of interannual changes of wetland inundation extent result in regional estimates of the net CO2 sink of −1.28 ± 0.03 Pg C yr−1 with a persistent wetland carbon sink from −0.38 to −0.41 Pg C yr−1 and a upland sink from −0.82 to −0.98 Pg C yr−1. Taken together, despite the large methane emissions from wetlands, the region is a consistent greenhouse gas sink per global warming potential (GWP) calculations irrespective of the type of wetland datasets being used. However, the use of satellite-detected wetland inundation extent estimates a smaller regional GWP sink than that estimated using static wetland datasets. Our sensitivity analysis indicates that if wetland inundation extent increases or decreases by 10% in each wetland grid cell, the regional source of methane increases 13% or decreases 12%, respectively. In contrast, the regional CO2 sink responds with only 7–9% changes to the changes in wetland inundation extent. Seasonally, the inundated area changes result in higher summer CH4 emissions, but lower summer CO2 sinks, leading to lower summer negative greenhouse gas forcing. Our analysis further indicates that wetlands play a disproportionally important role in affecting regional greenhouse gas budgets given that they only occupy approximately 10% of the total land area in the region.
  • Article
    Uncertainty analysis of vegetation distribution in the northern high latitudes during the 21st century with a dynamic vegetation model
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2012-02-13) Jiang, Yueyang ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Schaphoff, Sibyll ; Sitch, Stephen ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Melillo, Jerry M.
    This study aims to assess how high-latitude vegetation may respond under various climate scenarios during the 21st century with a focus on analyzing model parameters induced uncertainty and how this uncertainty compares to the uncertainty induced by various climates. The analysis was based on a set of 10,000 Monte Carlo ensemble Lund-Potsdam-Jena (LPJ) simulations for the northern high latitudes (45oN and polewards) for the period 1900–2100. The LPJ Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (LPJ-DGVM) was run under contemporary and future climates from four Special Report Emission Scenarios (SRES), A1FI, A2, B1, and B2, based on the Hadley Centre General Circulation Model (GCM), and six climate scenarios, X901M, X902L, X903H, X904M, X905L, and X906H from the Integrated Global System Model (IGSM) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). In the current dynamic vegetation model, some parameters are more important than others in determining the vegetation distribution. Parameters that control plant carbon uptake and light-use efficiency have the predominant influence on the vegetation distribution of both woody and herbaceous plant functional types. The relative importance of different parameters varies temporally and spatially and is influenced by climate inputs. In addition to climate, these parameters play an important role in determining the vegetation distribution in the region. The parameter-based uncertainties contribute most to the total uncertainty. The current warming conditions lead to a complexity of vegetation responses in the region. Temperate trees will be more sensitive to climate variability, compared with boreal forest trees and C3 perennial grasses. This sensitivity would result in a unanimous northward greenness migration due to anomalous warming in the northern high latitudes. Temporally, boreal needleleaved evergreen plants are projected to decline considerably, and a large portion of C3 perennial grass is projected to disappear by the end of the 21st century. In contrast, the area of temperate trees would increase, especially under the most extreme A1FI scenario. As the warming continues, the northward greenness expansion in the Arctic region could continue.
  • Article
    Evapotranspiration in Northern Eurasia : impact of forcing uncertainties on terrestrial ecosystem model estimates
    (John Wiley & Sons, 2015-04-03) Liu, Yaling ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Miralles, Diego ; Pan, Zhihua ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Zhu, Qing ; He, Yujie ; Chen, Jiquan ; Tchebakova, Nadja M. ; Sirin, Andrey ; Niyogi, Dev ; Melillo, Jerry M.
    The ecosystems in Northern Eurasia (NE) play an important role in the global water cycle and the climate system. While evapotranspiration (ET) is a critical variable to understand this role, ET over this region remains largely unstudied. Using an improved version of the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model with five widely used forcing data sets, we examine the impact that uncertainties in climate forcing data have on the magnitude, variability, and dominant climatic drivers of ET for the period 1979–2008. Estimates of regional average ET vary in the range of 241.4–335.7 mm yr−1 depending on the choice of forcing data. This range corresponds to as much as 32% of the mean ET. Meanwhile, the spatial patterns of long-term average ET across NE are generally consistent for all forcing data sets. Our ET estimates in NE are largely affected by uncertainties in precipitation (P), air temperature (T), incoming shortwave radiation (R), and vapor pressure deficit (VPD). During the growing season, the correlations between ET and each forcing variable indicate that T is the dominant factor in the north and P in the south. Unsurprisingly, the uncertainties in climate forcing data propagate as well to estimates of the volume of water available for runoff (here defined as P-ET). While the Climate Research Unit data set is overall the best choice of forcing data in NE according to our assessment, the quality of these forcing data sets remains a major challenge to accurately quantify the regional water balance in NE.
  • Article
    Permafrost degradation and methane : low risk of biogeochemical climate-warming feedback
    (IOP Publishing, 2013-07-10) Gao, Xiang ; Schlosser, C. Adam ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Walter Anthony, Katey M. ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Kicklighter, David W.
    Climate change and permafrost thaw have been suggested to increase high latitude methane emissions that could potentially represent a strong feedback to the climate system. Using an integrated earth-system model framework, we examine the degradation of near-surface permafrost, temporal dynamics of inundation (lakes and wetlands) induced by hydro-climatic change, subsequent methane emission, and potential climate feedback. We find that increases in atmospheric CH4 and its radiative forcing, which result from the thawed, inundated emission sources, are small, particularly when weighed against human emissions. The additional warming, across the range of climate policy and uncertainties in the climate-system response, would be no greater than 0.1 ° C by 2100. Further, for this temperature feedback to be doubled (to approximately 0.2 ° C) by 2100, at least a 25-fold increase in the methane emission that results from the estimated permafrost degradation would be required. Overall, this biogeochemical global climate-warming feedback is relatively small whether or not humans choose to constrain global emissions.
  • Article
    A review of and perspectives on global change modeling for Northern Eurasia
    (IOP Science, 2017-08-08) Monier, Erwan ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Sokolik, Irina ; Lawford, Richard ; Kappas, Martin ; Paltsev, Sergey ; Groisman, Pavel Ya
    Northern Eurasia is made up of a complex and diverse set of physical, ecological, climatic and human systems, which provide important ecosystem services including the storage of substantial stocks of carbon in its terrestrial ecosystems. At the same time, the region has experienced dramatic climate change, natural disturbances and changes in land management practices over the past century. For these reasons, Northern Eurasia is both a critical region to understand and a complex system with substantial challenges for the modeling community. This review is designed to highlight the state of past and ongoing efforts of the research community to understand and model these environmental, socioeconomic, and climatic changes. We further aim to provide perspectives on the future direction of global change modeling to improve our understanding of the role of Northern Eurasia in the coupled human–Earth system. Modeling efforts have shown that environmental and socioeconomic changes in Northern Eurasia can have major impacts on biodiversity, ecosystems services, environmental sustainability, and the carbon cycle of the region, and beyond. These impacts have the potential to feedback onto and alter the global Earth system. We find that past and ongoing studies have largely focused on specific components of Earth system dynamics and have not systematically examined their feedbacks to the global Earth system and to society. We identify the crucial role of Earth system models in advancing our understanding of feedbacks within the region and with the global system. We further argue for the need for integrated assessment models (IAMs), a suite of models that couple human activity models to Earth system models, which are key to address many emerging issues that require a representation of the coupled human–Earth system.
  • Article
    Future nitrogen availability and its effect on carbon sequestration in Northern Eurasia
    (Nature Research, 2019-07-09) Kicklighter, David W. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Monier, Erwan ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Zhuang, Qianlai
    Nitrogen (N) availability exerts strong control on carbon storage in the forests of Northern Eurasia. Here, using a process-based model, we explore how three factors that alter N availability—permafrost degradation, atmospheric N deposition, and the abandonment of agricultural land to forest regrowth (land-use legacy)—affect carbon storage in the region’s forest vegetation over the 21st century within the context of two IPCC global-change scenarios (RCPs 4.5 and 8.5). For RCP4.5, enhanced N availability results in increased tree carbon storage of 27.8 Pg C, with land-use legacy being the most important factor. For RCP8.5, enhanced N availability results in increased carbon storage in trees of 13.4 Pg C, with permafrost degradation being the most important factor. Our analysis reveals complex spatial and temporal patterns of regional carbon storage. This study underscores the importance of considering carbon-nitrogen interactions when assessing regional and sub-regional impacts of global change policies.
  • Preprint
    Effects of ozone on net primary production and carbon sequestration in the conterminous United States using a biogeochemistry model
    ( 2003-11-25) Felzer, Benjamin S. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Wang, C. ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Prinn, Ronald G.
    The effects of air pollution on vegetation may provide an important control on the carbon cycle that has not yet been widely considered. Prolonged exposure to high levels of ozone, in particular, has been observed to inhibit photosynthesis by direct cellular damage within the leaves and through possible changes in stomatal conductance. We have incorporated empirical equations derived for trees (hardwoods and pines) and crops into the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model to explore the effects of ozone on net primary production and carbon sequestration across the conterminous United States. Our results show a 2.6 – 6.8% mean reduction for the U.S. in annual Net Primary Production (NPP) in response to modeled historical ozone levels during the late 1980s-early 1990s. The largest decreases (over 13% in some locations) occur in the Midwest agricultural lands, during the mid-summer when ozone levels are highest. Carbon sequestration since the 1950s has been reduced by 18 - 38 Tg C yr-1 with the presence of ozone. Thus the effects of ozone on NPP and carbon sequestration should be factored into future calculations of the US carbon budget.
  • Article
    Net emissions of CH4 and CO2 in Alaska : implications for the region's greenhouse gas budget
    (Ecological Society of America, 2007-01) Zhuang, Qianlai ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; McGuire, A. David ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Prinn, Ronald G. ; Steudler, Paul A. ; Felzer, Benjamin S. ; Hu, Shaomin
    We used a biogeochemistry model, the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM), to study the net methane (CH4) fluxes between Alaskan ecosystems and the atmosphere. We estimated that the current net emissions of CH4 (emissions minus consumption) from Alaskan soils are 3 Tg CH4/yr. Wet tundra ecosystems are responsible for 75% of the region's net emissions, while dry tundra and upland boreal forests are responsible for 50% and 45% of total consumption over the region, respectively. In response to climate change over the 21st century, our simulations indicated that CH4 emissions from wet soils would be enhanced more than consumption by dry soils of tundra and boreal forests. As a consequence, we projected that net CH4 emissions will almost double by the end of the century in response to high-latitude warming and associated climate changes. When we placed these CH4 emissions in the context of the projected carbon budget (carbon dioxide [CO2] and CH4) for Alaska at the end of the 21st century, we estimated that Alaska will be a net source of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere of 69 Tg CO2 equivalents/yr, that is, a balance between net methane emissions of 131 Tg CO2 equivalents/yr and carbon sequestration of 17 Tg C/yr (62 Tg CO2 equivalents/yr).
  • Article
    Assessing the carbon balance of circumpolar Arctic tundra using remote sensing and process modeling
    (Ecological Society of America, 2007-01) Sitch, Stephen ; McGuire, A. David ; Kimball, John S. ; Gedney, Nicola ; Gamon, John ; Engstrom, Ryan ; Wolf, Annett ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Clein, Joy S. ; McDonald, Kyle C.
    This paper reviews the current status of using remote sensing and process-based modeling approaches to assess the contemporary and future circumpolar carbon balance of Arctic tundra, including the exchange of both carbon dioxide and methane with the atmosphere. Analyses based on remote sensing approaches that use a 20-year data record of satellite data indicate that tundra is greening in the Arctic, suggesting an increase in photosynthetic activity and net primary production. Modeling studies generally simulate a small net carbon sink for the distribution of Arctic tundra, a result that is within the uncertainty range of field-based estimates of net carbon exchange. Applications of process-based approaches for scenarios of future climate change generally indicate net carbon sequestration in Arctic tundra as enhanced vegetation production exceeds simulated increases in decomposition. However, methane emissions are likely to increase dramatically, in response to rising soil temperatures, over the next century. Key uncertainties in the response of Arctic ecosystems to climate change include uncertainties in future fire regimes and uncertainties relating to changes in the soil environment. These include the response of soil decomposition and respiration to warming and deepening of the soil active layer, uncertainties in precipitation and potential soil drying, and distribution of wetlands. While there are numerous uncertainties in the projections of process-based models, they generally indicate that Arctic tundra will be a small sink for carbon over the next century and that methane emissions will increase considerably, which implies that exchange of greenhouse gases between the atmosphere and Arctic tundra ecosystems is likely to contribute to climate warming.
  • Article
    Spatial scale-dependent land–atmospheric methane exchanges in the northern high latitudes from 1993 to 2004
    (Copernicus Publications on behalf of the European Geosciences Union, 2014-04-01) Zhu, Xudong ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Lu, Xiaoliang ; Song, L.
    Effects of various spatial scales of water table dynamics on land–atmospheric methane (CH4) exchanges have not yet been assessed for large regions. Here we used a coupled hydrology–biogeochemistry model to quantify daily CH4 exchanges over the pan-Arctic from 1993 to 2004 at two spatial scales of 100 km and 5 km. The effects of sub-grid spatial variability of the water table depth (WTD) on CH4 emissions were examined with a TOPMODEL-based parameterization scheme for the northern high latitudes. We found that both WTD and CH4 emissions are better simulated at a 5 km spatial resolution. By considering the spatial heterogeneity of WTD, net regional CH4 emissions at a 5 km resolution are 38.1–55.4 Tg CH4 yr−1 from 1993 to 2004, which are on average 42% larger than those simulated at a 100 km resolution using a grid-cell-mean WTD scheme. The difference in annual CH4 emissions is attributed to the increased emitting area and enhanced flux density with finer resolution for WTD. Further, the inclusion of sub-grid WTD spatial heterogeneity also influences the inter-annual variability of CH4 emissions. Soil temperature plays an important role in the 100 km estimates, while the 5 km estimates are mainly influenced by WTD. This study suggests that previous macro-scale biogeochemical models using a grid-cell-mean WTD scheme might have underestimated the regional CH4 emissions. The spatial scale-dependent effects of WTD should be considered in future quantification of regional CH4 emissions.
  • Article
    Northern Eurasia Future Initiative (NEFI) : facing the challenges and pathways of global change in the twenty-first century
    (Springer, 2017-12-27) Groisman, Pavel Ya ; Shugart, Herman ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Henebry, Geoffrey ; Tchebakova, Nadezhda ; Maksyutov, Shamil ; Monier, Erwan ; Gutman, Garik ; Gulev, Sergey ; Qi, Jiaguo ; Prishchepov, Alexander ; Kukavskaya, Elena ; Porfiriev, Boris ; Shiklomanov, Alexander ; Loboda, Tatiana ; Shiklomanov, Nikolay ; Nghiem, Son ; Bergen, Kathleen ; Albrechtová, Jana ; Chen, Jiquan ; Shahgedanova, Maria ; Shvidenko, Anatoly ; Speranskaya, Nina ; Soja, Amber ; de Beurs, Kirsten ; Bulygina, Olga N ; McCarty, Jessica ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Zolina, Olga
    During the past several decades, the Earth system has changed significantly, especially across Northern Eurasia. Changes in the socio-economic conditions of the larger countries in the region have also resulted in a variety of regional environmental changes that can have global consequences. The Northern Eurasia Future Initiative (NEFI) has been designed as an essential continuation of the Northern Eurasia Earth Science Partnership Initiative (NEESPI), which was launched in 2004. NEESPI sought to elucidate all aspects of ongoing environmental change, to inform societies and, thus, to better prepare societies for future developments. A key principle of NEFI is that these developments must now be secured through science-based strategies co-designed with regional decision-makers to lead their societies to prosperity in the face of environmental and institutional challenges. NEESPI scientific research, data, and models have created a solid knowledge base to support the NEFI program. This paper presents the NEFI research vision consensus based on that knowledge. It provides the reader with samples of recent accomplishments in regional studies and formulates new NEFI science questions. To address these questions, nine research foci are identified and their selections are briefly justified. These foci include warming of the Arctic; changing frequency, pattern, and intensity of extreme and inclement environmental conditions; retreat of the cryosphere; changes in terrestrial water cycles; changes in the biosphere; pressures on land use; changes in infrastructure; societal actions in response to environmental change; and quantification of Northern Eurasia’s role in the global Earth system. Powerful feedbacks between the Earth and human systems in Northern Eurasia (e.g., mega-fires, droughts, depletion of the cryosphere essential for water supply, retreat of sea ice) result from past and current human activities (e.g., large-scale water withdrawals, land use, and governance change) and potentially restrict or provide new opportunities for future human activities. Therefore, we propose that integrated assessment models are needed as the final stage of global change assessment. The overarching goal of this NEFI modeling effort will enable evaluation of economic decisions in response to changing environmental conditions and justification of mitigation and adaptation efforts.
  • Article
    CO2 and CH4 exchanges between land ecosystems and the atmosphere in northern high latitudes over the 21st century
    (American Geophysical Union, 2006-09-15) Zhuang, Qianlai ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Sarofim, Marcus C. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; McGuire, A. David ; Felzer, Benjamin S. ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Prinn, Ronald G. ; Steudler, Paul A. ; Hu, Shaomin
    Terrestrial ecosystems of the northern high latitudes (above 50oN) exchange large amounts of CO2 and CH4 with the atmosphere each year. Here we use a process-based model to estimate the budget of CO2 and CH4 of the region for current climate conditions and for future scenarios by considering effects of permafrost dynamics, CO2 fertilization of photosynthesis and fire. We find that currently the region is a net source of carbon to the atmosphere at 276 Tg C yr-1. We project that throughout the 21st century, the region will most likely continue as a net source of carbon and the source will increase by up to 473 Tg C yr-1 by the end of the century compared to the current emissions. However our coupled carbon and climate model simulations show that these emissions will exert relatively small radiative forcing on global climate system compared to large amounts of anthropogenic emissions.
  • Preprint
    Importance of soil thermal regime in terrestrial ecosystem carbon dynamics in the circumpolar north
    ( 2016-04-19) Jiang, Yueyang ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Sitch, Stephen ; O'Donnell, Jonathan A. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Sokolov, Andrei P. ; Melillo, Jerry M.
    In the circumpolar north (45-90°N), permafrost plays an important role in vegetation and carbon (C) dynamics. Permafrost thawing has been accelerated by the warming climate and exerts a positive feedback to climate through increasing soil C release to the atmosphere. To evaluate the influence of permafrost on C dynamics, changes in soil temperature profiles should be considered in global C models. This study incorporates a sophisticated soil thermal model (STM) into a dynamic global vegetation model (LPJ-DGVM) to improve simulations of changes in soil temperature profiles from the ground surface to 3 m depth, and its impacts on C pools and fluxes during the 20th and 21st centuries.With cooler simulated soil temperatures during the summer, LPJ-STM estimates ~0.4 Pg C yr-1 lower present-day heterotrophic respiration but ~0.5 Pg C yr-1 higher net primary production than the original LPJ model resulting in an additional 0.8 to 1.0 Pg C yr-1 being sequestered in circumpolar ecosystems. Under a suite of projected warming scenarios, we show that the increasing active layer thickness results in the mobilization of permafrost C, which contributes to a more rapid increase in heterotrophic respiration in LPJ-STM compared to the stand-alone LPJ model. Except under the extreme warming conditions, increases in plant production due to warming and rising CO2, overwhelm the enhanced ecosystem respiration so that both boreal forest and arctic tundra ecosystems remain a net C sink over the 21st century. This study highlights the importance of considering changes in the soil thermal regime when quantifying the C budget in the circumpolar north.
  • Preprint
    Future effects of ozone on carbon sequestration and climate change policy using a global biogeochemical model
    ( 2004-10-29) Felzer, Benjamin S. ; Reilly, John M. ; Melillo, Jerry M. ; Kicklighter, David W. ; Sarofim, Marcus C. ; Wang, C. ; Prinn, Ronald G. ; Zhuang, Qianlai
    Exposure of plants to ozone inhibits photosynthesis and therefore reduces vegetation production and carbon sequestration. The reduced carbon storage would then require further reductions in fossil fuel emissions to meet a given CO2 concentration target, thereby increasing the cost of meeting the target. Simulations with the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM) for the historical period (1860-1995) show the largest damages occur in the Southeast and Midwestern regions of the United States, eastern Europe, and eastern China. The largest reductions in carbon storage for the period 1950-1995, 41%, occur in eastern Europe. Scenarios for the 21st century developed with the MIT Integrated Global Systems Model (IGSM) lead to even greater negative effects on carbon storage in the future. In some regions, current land carbon sinks become carbon sources, and this change leads to carbon sequestration decreases of up to 0.4 Pg C yr-1 due to damage in some regional ozone hot spots. With a climate policy, failing to consider the effects of ozone damage on carbon sequestration would raise the global costs over the next century of stabilizing atmospheric concentrations of CO2 equivalents at 550 ppm by 6 to 21%. Because stabilization at 550 ppm will reduce emission of other gases that cause ozone, these additional benefits are estimated to be between 5 and 25% of the cost of the climate policy. Tropospheric ozone effects on terrestrial ecosystems thus produce a surprisingly large feedback in estimating climate policy costs that, heretofore, has not been included in cost estimates.