For the InstructorThese student materials complement the Critical Zone Science Instructor Materials. If you would like your students to have access to the student materials, we suggest you either point them at the Student Version which omits the framing pages with information designed for faculty (and this box). Or you can download these pages in several formats that you can include in your course website or local Learning Managment System. Learn more about using, modifying, and sharing InTeGrate teaching materials.
Unit 4.2: Carbon Budgets
The purpose of this unit is to explore, compare, contrast and interpret carbon fluxes from the Ameriflux network to better appreciate the critical factors that account for the different timing and magnitude of fluxes among these sites. This module will help you complete your semester-long project by introducing you to critical baseline data collection and data bases related to carbon budgets.
The primary data set for this activity is the Amerflux network database, which spans over 150 sites throughout the Americas. Each data set is uniformly formatted and can contain up to 45 fields of meteorological and flux data collected from various eddy correlation tower instruments. In this unit, you will:
- use a carbon cycle diagram to discuss the different pathways carbon moves at a watershed scale
- contrast global and biome-specific carbon budgets to better understand watershed-scale processes
- relate carbon flux data collected at various scales to understand the regional exchange of carbon at an Ameriflux site
- explore and visualize carbon flux data from the Ameriflux database
- use carbon flux data from the Ameriflux database to support a simple hypothesis relating carbon flux to driving environmental variables
Unit 4.2: Carbon Budgets
Part 1 - Carbon Flux
- Read the following articles to prepare for class:
Examining Annual Carbon Flux Activity
- The purpose of this exercise is to compare and contrast data from four eddy correlation measurement sites to discover and think about the causal or physical relationships among these variables. Examine the four graphs in Table 4.2.1 (resources) and look for critical relationships between the parameters.
- Worksheet: Examining Carbon Flux Graphs Activity (PDF) (Acrobat (PDF) 270kB Oct3 13).
- Handout: Full Set of 4 Mini Carbon Flux Graphs (12/page) - Carbon Flux Discovery Graphs (Acrobat (PDF) 156kB Sep24 13).
- Support: Example Annotated Graphs (PPT) (PowerPoint 2007 (.pptx) 1.5MB Dec23 16) for classroom discussion.
- The purpose of these slides is to tie the motivation for monitoring CO2 back to the bigger issue of global climate change and to highlight some of the key understandings we have of the carbon cycle and what the flows of carbon are at the global scale. The slides also start to introduce some of the plant physiological factors that affect the magnitude of the carbon flux.
- Lecture Notes, Carbon Cycle and Budgets, Printable (6/pg) Note Set (Acrobat (PDF) PRIVATE FILE 1.5MB Feb25 17).
Carbon Flux Graphing Activity
- The goal here is to work with typically archived carbon flux data. For convenience, we have selected the Ameriflux network (which has limited overlap with the CZO network). In class you will start exploring the Ameriflux database and examine metadata that will be crucial to understanding the data record.
- This homework is more fully described in the Student Worksheet (above). In order to give you broader exposure to a high quality Carbon flux dataset and because of network‐to-network inconsistencies in the CZO data set, we will focus our initial data manipulations on the excellent Ameriflux network with over 150 sites throughout the Americas. Once you have experience with this data set, it is fairly easy to address similar questions with the CZO data set. As a challenge, look at a different data set than the one covered in class and produce two labeled graphs demonstrating that you can visualize this data set using Excel or Matlab.
- Graph 1: Carbon fluxes - FC and Re.
- Graph 2: Energy fluxes - Rn, H, LE.
Part 2 - Carbon Flux Hypothesis
- Read the following article, focusing on definitions, figures and tables which clearly show the magnitude of various carbon fluxes in different environments:
- Luyssaert, et al., 2007, CO2 balance of boreal, temperate, and tropical forests derived from a global database. Global Change Biology, 13, 2509-2537. (link may require Wiley on-line subscription)
- Discussion Notes, Printable (4/pg), Luyssaert reading: Note Set (Acrobat (PDF) 236kB Feb25 17).
Review and Discussion
- Discuss the previous class activities. This discussion and supporting material highlights eddy correlation which is the source of some of the CZO data we are dealing with.
- Please review the following source material
- Download and review sections 2.6, 2.7, 3.2, 4.11 in Burba, G., 2013. Eddy Covariance Method for Scientific, Industrial, Agricultural, and Regulatory Applications: A Field Book on Measuring Ecosystem Gas Exchange and Areal Emission Rates. LI-COR Biosciences, Lincoln, NE, USA, 331 pp. https://www.licor.com/env/products/eddy_covariance/resources.html
- Download and review lectures 3, 8 in Baldochi's ESPM Class notes for Advanced Topics in Micromet and Biomet http://nature.berkeley.edu/biometlab/index.php?scrn=espm228
Carbon Flux Hypothesis Activity
- The purpose of this activity is to connect physical factors that might affect ecosystem productivity with the flux data available from the CZO or Ameriflux databases. One way to get started is to think about the four biomes we looked at originally (Rockies Ponderosa Forest, High Plains Grassland, Appalachian Deciduous Forest, and Canadian Pine Forest) and consider what factors control plant growth.
- Worksheet - Carbon Flux Hypothesis Activity (PDF) (Acrobat (PDF) 86kB Oct3 13).
- Form a simple hypothesis regarding factors affecting the CO2 flux and support it using Ameriflux data.
- Martin et al, Understanding Carbon Storage in Forests, Earth Exploration Toolbox, part of GLOBE Landcover investigation
- There are excellent resources at: globalcarboncycle.unh.edu/index.shtml
Sources of Data
- Critical Zone Observatory National Database
- Ameriflux network, Home: http://ameriflux.ornl.gov/
- Ameriflux network, New: http://ameriflux.lbl.gov/AmeriFluxSites/Pages/Site-Map.aspx
- ORNL DAAC for Biogeochemical Dynamics, http://daac.ornl.gov/get_data.shtml
- US Carbon Cycle Science Program, https://www.carboncyclescience.us/what-is-carbon-cycle 'What is the Carbon Cycle?'
- USFS, Forest and Grassland carbon in North America
- UCAR Global Change Instruction Program - Carbon Cycle
- Climate Change - Earth's Climate System - Earth's carbon reservoirs, Scripps/UCSD Earthguide Curriculum
- Kling, The flow of energy: Primary Production to higher tropic levels, global change course, Umich
Example data sets - Ameriflux Data (averaged and plotted by Washburne for InTeGrate, 2013 from data downloaded from Ameriflux website)
|Site||Flux Tower Graphs|
|Full Set of 15 carbon Flux Graphs (9/pg)||CarbonFluxSet (Acrobat (PDF) 458kB Sep21 13)|
Sa1: LBA Tapajos Mature Tropical Forest
Sa3: LBA Tapajos Logged Tropical Forest
Sa12005 (Acrobat (PDF) 33kB Sep21 13)
Sa32003 (Acrobat (PDF) 32kB Sep21 13)
NR1: Niwot Ridge Evergreen Alpine, CO
NS5: Manitoba Evergreen Forest, CN
Fuf: Flagstaff Evergreen Forest, AZ
NR12007 (Acrobat (PDF) 35kB Sep21 13)
NS52007 (Acrobat (PDF) 35kB Sep24 13)
Fuf2007 (Acrobat (PDF) 37kB Sep21 13)
SP1: Austin Cary Pine, FL
ME2: Metolius Interm. Pine, OR
KS2: Kennedy Space Ctr Scrub Oak, FL
SP12006 (Acrobat (PDF) 34kB Sep21 13)
ME22007 (Acrobat (PDF) 35kB Sep21 13)
KS22006 (Acrobat (PDF) 36kB Sep21 13)
MMS: Morgan Monroe Decid. Forest, IN
WBW: Walker Branch Decid. Forest, TN
Ha1: Harvard Decid. Forest, MA
MMS2005 (Acrobat (PDF) 35kB Sep21 13)
WBW1999 (Acrobat (PDF) 48kB Sep21 13)
Ha12006 (Acrobat (PDF) 36kB Sep21 13)
Var: Vaira Ranch Grassland, CA
Wkg: WG Kendall Grassland, AZ
Var2007 (Acrobat (PDF) 34kB Sep21 13)
Wkg2007 (Acrobat (PDF) 36kB Sep21 13)
IB2: Fermi Prairie, IL
Wlr: Walnut River grasslands, KS
IB22006 (Acrobat (PDF) 35kB Sep21 13)
Wlr2003 (Acrobat (PDF) 35kB Sep21 13)