Fires increase Amazon forest productivity through increases in diffuse radiation

Rap, A., Spracklen, D. V., Mercado, L., Reddington, C. L., Haywood, J. M., Ellis, R. J., Phillips, O. L., Artaxo, P., Bonal, D., Restrepo Coupe, N. and Butt, N. (2015) Fires increase Amazon forest productivity through increases in diffuse radiation. Geophysical Research Letters, 42 11: 4654-4662. doi:10.1002/2015GL063719

Author Rap, A.
Spracklen, D. V.
Mercado, L.
Reddington, C. L.
Haywood, J. M.
Ellis, R. J.
Phillips, O. L.
Artaxo, P.
Bonal, D.
Restrepo Coupe, N.
Butt, N.
Title Fires increase Amazon forest productivity through increases in diffuse radiation
Journal name Geophysical Research Letters   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1944-8007
Publication date 2015-06-16
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1002/2015GL063719
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 42
Issue 11
Start page 4654
End page 4662
Total pages 9
Place of publication Hoboken NJ, United States
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Atmospheric aerosol scatters solar radiation increasing the fraction of diffuse radiation and the efficiency of photosynthesis. We quantify the impacts of biomass burning aerosol (BBA) on diffuse radiation and plant photosynthesis across Amazonia during 1998–2007. Evaluation against observed aerosol optical depth allows us to provide lower and upper BBA emissions estimates. BBA increases Amazon basin annual mean diffuse radiation by 3.4–6.8% and net primary production (NPP) by 1.4–2.8%, with quoted ranges driven by uncertainty in BBA emissions. The enhancement of Amazon basin NPP by 78–156 Tg C a−1 is equivalent to 33–65% of the annual regional carbon emissions from biomass burning. This NPP increase occurs during the dry season and acts to counteract some of the observed effect of drought on tropical production. We estimate that 30–60 Tg C a−1 of this NPP enhancement is within woody tissue, accounting for 8–16% of the observed carbon sink across mature Amazonian forests.
Keyword Aerosol
Biomass burning
Deforestation fires
Diffuse radiation
Plant photosynthesis
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 11 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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