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Jing M. Chen

Professor, CRC, FRSC
Department of Geography and Program in Planning,
University of Toronto

Chen imageTerrestrial biosphere plays an important role in the global carbon budget, responsible for absorbing up to one quarter of carbon dioxide emitted to the atmosphere through fossil fuel combustion and land use change. However, the spatiotemporal distributions of carbon sinks on the land surface are not yet clear. The focus of my research group is spatially explicit carbon and water cycle modeling for terrestrial ecosystems based on remote sensing and other spatial data. Various vegetation biophysical parameters, including leaf are index, foliage clumping index, and chlorophyll, are derived from multispectral, multiangle and hyperspectral remote sensing imagery. Regional and global maps of these parameters are produced and used for ecosystem modeling. Based on our previous work in quantifying the spatial distribution of carbon sources and sinks in Canada’s forests and wetlands with comprehensive consideration of disturbance (fire, insect, harvest) and non-disturbance (climate, nitrogen, CO2) factors, we have recently expanded the work to the globe. In parallel with these bottom-up modeling, a top-down modeling system, i.e., a nested global inverse modeling system, is also developed to provide a possibility of top-down and bottom-up mutual constraint in quantifying the global biosphere carbon balance and its spatiotemporal distributions.

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