Estimating global gross primary productivity using chlorophyll fluorescence and a data assimilation system with the BETHY-SCOPE model
This paper presents the assimilation of solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) into a terrestrial biosphere model to estimate the gross uptake of carbon through photosynthesis (GPP). We use the BETHY-SCOPE model to simulate both GPP and SIF using a process-based formulation, going beyond a simple linear scaling between the two. We then use satellite SIF data from the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) for 2015 in the data assimilation system to constrain model biophysical parameters and GPP. The assimilation results in considerable improvement in the fit between model and observed SIF, despite a limited capability to fit regions with large seasonal variability in SIF. The SIF assimilation increases global GPP by 31 % to 167±5 Pg C yr−1 and shows an improvement in the global distribution of productivity relative to independent estimates, but a large difference in magnitude. This change in global GPP is driven by an overall increase in photosynthetic light-use efficiency across almost all biomes and more minor, regionally distinct changes in APAR. This process-based data assimilation opens up new pathways to the effective utilization of satellite SIF data to improve our understanding of the global carbon cycle.