Developing a global mixed-canopy, height-variable vegetation structure dataset for estimating global vegetation albedo and biomass in the NASA Ent Terrestrial Biosphere Model and GISS GCM

Friday, 18 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
Carlo Montes1, Nancy Y Kiang1, Wenze Yang2, Wenge Ni-Meister3, Crystal Schaaf4, Igor D Aleinov5, Jeffrey Jonas6, Feng Aron Zhao7, Tian Yao8, Zhuosen Wang9 and Qingsong Sun4, (1)NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York, NY, United States, (2)University of Maryland, College Park, MD, United States, (3)Organization Not Listed, Washington, DC, United States, (4)University of Massachusetts Boston, School for the Environment, Boston, MA, United States, (5)Columbia University of New York, Palisades, NY, United States, (6)Columbia Univ, New York, NY, United States, (7)University of Maryland College Park, Geographical Sciences, College Park, MD, United States, (8)Universities Space Research Association Greenbelt, Greenbelt, MD, United States, (9)NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, United States
Processes determining biosphere-atmosphere coupling are strongly influenced by vegetation structure. Thus, ecosystem carbon sequestration and evapotranspiration affecting global carbon and water balances will depend upon the spatial extent of vegetation, its vertical structure, and its physiological variability. To represent this globally, Dynamic Global Vegetation Models (DGVMs) coupled to General Circulation Models (GCMs) make use of satellite and/or model-based vegetation classifications often composed by homogeneous communities. This work aims at developing a new Global Vegetation Structure Dataset (GVSD) by incorporating varying vegetation heights for mixed plant communities to be used as input to the Ent Terrestrial Biosphere Model (TBM), the DGVM coupled to the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) GCM. Information sources include the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) land cover and plant functional types (PFTs) (Friedl et al., 2010), vegetation height from the Geoscience Laser Altimeter System (GLAS) on board ICESat (Ice, Cloud, and land Elevation Satellite) (Simard et al., 2011; Tang et al., 2014) along with the Global Data Sets of Vegetation Leaf Area Index (LAI)3g (Zhu et al. 2013). Further PFT partitioning is performed according to a climate classification utilizing the Climate Research Unit (CRU) and the NOAA Global Precipitation Climatology Centre (GPCC) data. Final products are a GVSD consisting of mixed plant communities (e.g. mixed forests, savannas, mixed PFTs) following the Ecosystem Demography model (Moorcroft et al., 2001) approach represented by multi-cohort community patches at the sub-grid level of the GCM, which are ensembles of identical individuals whose differences are represented by PFTs, canopy height, density and vegetation structure sensitivity to allometric parameters. To assess the sensitivity of the GISS GCM to vegetation structure, we produce a range of estimates of Ent TBM biomass and plant densities by varying allometric specifications. Ultimately, this GVSD will serve as a template for community data sets, and be used as boundary conditions to the Ent TBM for prediction of canopy albedo in the Analytical Clumped Two-Stream canopy radiative transfer scheme, biomass, primary productivity, respiration, and GISS GCM climate.