OOS 87
Creative Approaches for Addressing Ecological Uncertainty in Earth System Models

Friday, August 14, 2015: 8:00 AM-11:30 AM
327, Baltimore Convention Center
Nicholas G. Smith, Purdue University
Jeffrey S. Dukes, Purdue University
Nicholas G. Smith, Purdue University
The terrestrial biosphere components of the Earth System Models (ESMs) that make projections of future climate change are becoming increasingly complex, incorporating a wide variety of biological and ecological processes. These processes have been shown to exhibit a significant influence on simulations of biosphere-atmosphere feedbacks across multiple scales. In addition, a large portion of the uncertainty associated with ESMs has been attributed to terrestrial biosphere processes. This uncertainty stems in part from a lack of representation of important processes as well as a poor understanding of modeled processes at relevant scales. Addressing this uncertainty and ultimately improving model functioning is not a simple task and requires a firm understanding of both fundamental biology as well as model structure and functioning. However, with the formation of research networks such as INTERFACE and FORECAST in the United States and CLIMMANI and TERRABITES in Europe, an increasingly large body of research is now being devoted to gaining a theoretical and empirical understanding of biological and ecological processes at scales relevant for models. In addition, many modeling efforts are underway that are designed to determine processes most in need of improvement as well as incorporate and evaluate new formulations developed by the experimental community. This session will serve to highlight work being done by the empirical and modeling communities to help merge these fields for the purpose of improving the reliability of ESM simulations. The primary objectives of this session will be twofold: (1) to highlight past approaches that have led to significant improvements to representation of terrestrial processes in large-scale models and the challenges that led to these improvements, and (2) to discuss deficiencies in model representations of terrestrial processes as well as ways researchers are and will be addressing these issues in the future. The first talk of the session will serve to introduce the session and provide a historical context. The talks to follow will highlight creative approaches to address the issue of incorporating biological and ecological processes into models. These talks will come from speakers working at the interface of empirical- and model-driven research and will address a range of ecological processes acting at multiple spatial and temporal scales.
8:20 AM
 Nutrient availability limits future productivity and carbon storage in terrestrial ecosystems
Cory C. Cleveland, University of Montana; Will R. Wieder, National Center for Atmospheric Research; W. Kolby Smith, University of Minnesota; Katherine Todd-Brown, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
9:00 AM
 Understanding demographic controls of aboveground forest carbon at a continental scale
Mark C. Vanderwel, University of Regina; Hongcheng Zeng, University of Toronto; John P. Caspersen, University of Toronto; Georges Kunstler, Irstea; Jeremy W. Lichstein, University of Florida
9:20 AM
 Natural resource availability under future environmental change
Danica Lombardozzi, NCAR; Gordon Bonan, NCAR; Samuel Levis, National Center for Atmospheric Research
9:40 AM
9:50 AM
 Productivity and turnover controls on terrestrial carbon feedbacks in the CMIP5 ESMs
Charles Koven, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab; Jeffrey Q. Chambers, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of California Berkeley; Katerina Georgiou, University of California, Berkeley; Ryan Knox, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab; Robinson Negron-Juarez, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab; William J. Riley, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Vivek Arora, Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis; Victor Brovkin, Max Planck Institute for Meteorology; Pierre Friedlingstein, University of Exeter; Chris Jones, Met Office Hadley Centre
10:10 AM
 Building evidence-based models: Bridging the gap between experimental data and vegetation models
Belinda Medlyn, University of Western Sydney; Martin G. De Kauwe, Macquarie University; Soenke Zaehle, Max-Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry; Anthony Walker, Oak Ridge National Laboratory; Richard J. Norby, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
10:30 AM
 Incorporating plant functional diversity into Earth system models: Plant carbon allocation strategies in light- and water-limited ecosystems
Jeremy W. Lichstein, University of Florida; Tao Zhang, University of Florida; Ensheng Weng, Princeton University; Caroline E. Farrior, Princeton University; Sergey Malyshev, Princeton University; Elena Shevliakova, Princeton University; Ray Dybzinski, Princeton University; Richard Birdsey, Forest Service; Stephen W. Pacala, Princeton University