Multiple Constraint Estimates of the European Carbon Balance

  • Martin Heimann
  • Christian Rödenbeck
  • Galina Churkina
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 203)

The multiple-constraint approach has become a paradigm of carbon cycle research, in particular in assessments of regional carbon balances and its temporal evolution. In principle, trace gas budgets can be estimated by two complementary approaches: in the bottom-up method, local point-wise information (e.g., flux measurements or inventory data in representative locations) is scaled up to the region of interest using a combination of geographical information system (GIS) and remote sensing data. For the upscaling, various extrapolation procedures, diagnostic or prognostic models have to be used. In contrast, the top-down approach is based on atmospheric concentration measurements of the trace gas under consideration. In this case, the atmosphere is used as a natural integrator of the fluxes from the heterogeneous region of interest. Since the sources and sinks of the trace gas are reflected in spatial and temporal atmospheric concentration variations, observations of the latter can be used in an inverse model of atmospheric transport in order to determine the surface sources and sinks.

This chapter is focused on the European carbon balance. In principle, the multiple- constraint approach is also applicable to other regions of the globe and to other species such as CH4 (see Chap. 14). Although we believe that similar methodical limitations prevail in other areas, the relative importance may be different because of different environmental and historical conditions as well as different density and quality of the observations.


Flux Estimate Global Biogeochemical Cycle Inversion Problem Global Change Biology Terrestrial Ecosystem Model 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Heimann
    • 1
    • 2
  • Christian Rödenbeck
    • 1
    • 2
  • Galina Churkina
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Max-Planck-Institute for BiogeochemistryJena
  2. 2.JenaGermany

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