Canadian Forest Service Publications

Belowground biomass dynamics in the Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian Forest Sector: recent improvements and implications for the estimation of NPP and NEP. 2003. Li, Z.; Kurz, W.A.; Apps, M.J.; Beukema, S.J. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 33(1): 126-136.

Year: 2003

Issued by: Pacific Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 21265

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.1139/x02-165

† This site may require a fee

Mark record


In the Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian forest Sector (CBM-CFS2), root biomass and dynamics are estimated using regression equations based on the literature. A recent analysis showed that some of these equations might overestimate belowground net primary production (NPPB). The objectives of this study were to update the compilation of root biomass and turnover data, to recalculate the regression equations and to evaluate the impact of the new equations on CBM-CFS2 estimates of net primary production (NPP) and net ecosystem production (NEP). We updated all equations based on 635 pairs of aboveground and belowground data compiled from published studies in the cold temperate and boreal forests. The new parameter for the equation to predict total root biomass for softwood species changed only slightly, but the changes for hardwood species were statistically significant. A new equation form, which improved the accuracy and biological interpretation, was used to predict fine root biomass as a proportion of total root biomass. The annual rate of fine root turnover was currently estimated to be 0.641 of fine root biomass. A comparison of NPP estimates from CBM-CFS2 with results from field measurements, empirical calculations and modeling indicated that the new root equations predicted reasonable NPPB values. The changes to the root equations had little effect on NE estimates.