Using the anomaly forcing Community Land Model (CLM 4.5) for crop yield projections

Lu, Yaqiong; Yang, Xianyu

Crop growth in land surface models normally requires high-temporal-resolution climate data (3-hourly or 6-hourly), but such high-temporal-resolution climate data are not provided by many climate model simulations due to expensive storage, which limits modeling choices if there is an interest in a particular climate simulation that only saved monthly outputs. The Community Land Surface Model (CLM) has proposed an alternative approach for utilizing monthly climate outputs as forcing data since version 4.5, and it is called the anomaly forcing CLM. However, such an approach has never been validated for crop yield projections. In our work, we created anomaly forcing datasets for three climate scenarios (1.5 inline-formulaC warming, 2.0 inline-formulaC warming, and RCP4.5) and validated crop yields against the standard CLM forcing with the same climate scenarios using 3-hourly data. We found that the anomaly forcing CLM could not produce crop yields identical to the standard CLM due to the different submonthly variations, crop yields were underestimated by 5 %–8 % across the three scenarios (1.5, 2.0 inline-formulaC, and RCP4.5) for the global average, and 28 %–41 % of cropland showed significantly different yields. However, the anomaly forcing CLM effectively captured the relative changes between scenarios and over time, as well as regional crop yield variations. We recommend that such an approach be used for qualitative analysis of crop yields when only monthly outputs are available. Our approach can be adopted by other land surface models to expand their capabilities for utilizing monthly climate data.

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Lu, Yaqiong / Yang, Xianyu: Using the anomaly forcing Community Land Model (CLM 4.5) for crop yield projections. 2021. Copernicus Publications.

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