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National Assessment of Ecological C Sequestration and Greenhouse Gas Fluxes – the USGS LandCarbon Project Zhiliang Zhu, Project Chief, What.

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Presentation on theme: "National Assessment of Ecological C Sequestration and Greenhouse Gas Fluxes – the USGS LandCarbon Project Zhiliang Zhu, Project Chief, What."— Presentation transcript:

1 National Assessment of Ecological C Sequestration and Greenhouse Gas Fluxes – the USGS LandCarbon Project Zhiliang Zhu, Project Chief, What is the role of carbon in global change research? What do we know about carbon dynamics nationally and globally? The USGS assessment: what are our objectives and approach? Introduce our recent work and findings, what do the findings mean to us?

2 Role of carbon in the world, and in the U.S. Wikipedia: year 2000

3 Carbon in Ecosystems

4 Carbon cycle in ecosystems Forests Wetlands Agricultural lands GrasslandsAquatic systems

5 What do we know? C stock in ecosystems estimated from various sources Annual C stock change in and between ecosystems from EPA (Tg C) Data are for CONUS only

6 What we don’t know (so well)?  What are spatial and temporal patterns and trends of the C stocks and fluxes?  How does climate change affect C stock and sequestration?  What is the role of LULC change? Land management? Natural disturbances?

7 USGS LandCarbon Assessment Objectives and Scope Scope: 1.Five primary ecosystems: forests, shrub/grasslands, croplands, wetlands and aquatic (rivers, lakes, coastal waters) systems 2.Two types of assessment: baseline (current) and future projections (“forecasts”) 3.Carbon storage and sequestration; fluxes of CO 2, N 2 O, and CH 4 4.Effects of natural and anthropogenic processes (e.g. climate change, wildfire, land use change, and land management activities) 5.All 50 States Objectives: 1.To implement the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA), Section To improve scientific understanding of carbon sequestration and GHG fluxes in ecosystems related to land use, using research results from USGS and other organizations

8 Methodology of the Assessment Current fire areas and GHG emissions Future fire areas and GHG emissions Current fire areas and GHG emissions Future fire areas and GHG emissions Current LULC maps Future scenarios Future LULC maps Forest age change Current LULC maps Future scenarios Future LULC maps Forest age change Aquatic C and GHG methods Terrestrial C and GHG modeling Analysis, Report, Data Distribution Input data: inventory, remote sensing, climate, soil, land management Monitoring R&D Information and Products Produced Annually from 2001 to 2050

9 Assessment conducted at a regional scale 1 st 2 nd 3 rd 4 th

10 IPCC 4 th Assessment Scenarios

11 Current and future potential LULC changes in Great Plains

12 Wildland fire: current and future potential

13 Baseline and Future Potential Carbon Trends ForestsGrasslandsAg landsWetlandsWaterTotal CONUS from literature57,00016,00020,00062, ,000 Forest Service Great Plains2,096 USGS GP assessment1,1622,6143, ,500

14 Current C Budget in Great Plains Region

15 Future LULC and C Changes in the Great Plains 15 Net Changes Between Years

16 Lessons learned from the GP assessment  There are many science gaps that affect the overall quality of the assessment  Biogeochemical models are very limited  It takes a lot of resources (time and money) to attribute effects of carbon sequestration to climate change, land use, land management, and natural disturbances; we were unable to do a good enough job  Still no good way to quantify uncertainties 16


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