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CD-34 Abstract

Disturbance Effects on Carbon Dynamics in Old-Growth Amazon Forest: Model Algorithm Development and Synthesis from Individual Trees to Landscapes

Plínio Barbosa de Camargo — USP - Universidade de Sao Paulo (SA-PI)
Jeffrey Q. Chambers — Tulane University (US-PI)
Niro Higuchi — INPA - Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas na Amazonia (SA-PI)
Joaquim dos Santos — INPA-Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (SA-PI)

Recent studies indicate that changing dynamics in forests, affecting 75-85% of the Amazon basin that remain relatively undisturbed, may have impacts on regional and global processes as large as those due to land-use change. This project aims to synthesize data and results from our previous LBA research, along with data from other LBA and non-LBA investigations, to improve our understanding of disturbance impacts on old-growth forest structure and regional carbon cycling. This synthesis will be carried out using the Ecosystem Demography model (ED) as a integrative platform, and will benefit from analyses of hyperspectral remote sensing data from the Hyperion imaging spectrometer onboard NASA’s EO-1 satellite. The overall project will be carried out under two primary unifying tasks. Task-1: A synthesis of field and remote sensing investigations on the dynamics of tree mortality disturbance will be accomplished, including sites from seven Amazon basin countries. Products will be broadly useful to other research and modeling groups. Task-2: A number of regional and basin-wide runs of ED will be performed using the synthetic products from Task-1, and known variability in disturbance-related parameters. Plausible scenarios of Amazon forest response to temporal and spatial variability in tree mortality disturbance will be investigated to evaluate carbon cycle consequences. Expected significant contributions from this project include: (i) a well tested ecosystem simulation model with improvements based on recent advances in Amazon forest research; (ii) Hyperion images processed from across the basin providing spatial and temporal information on landscape-scale disturbance, (iii) basin-wide tree mortality disturbance maps derived from an integration of field and remote sensing data spanning a gradient from individual trees to landscape-scale events such as blowdowns, and (iv) model forecasts of forest landscape carbon balance based on a number of temporal and spatial disturbance scenarios, including thorough error analyses. Specific LBA-related objectives include: Amazonian carbon dynamics, Whole system functioning, and Future trajectories of change in the Amazon.

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