BOX 7.4



In the first half of 2007, the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) will do an extended assimilation of weather and CO2 for the period 2003–2004. In the second half of 2007, ECMWF will upgrade the system to include CO2 in the land-surface model rather than use climatology.


ECMWF will merge the CO2 system with the two other systems for aerosol and reactive gases:

  • Reanalyze AIRS and SCIAMACHY data.

  • Prepare to use OCO.

  • Prepare for operational CO2 transition in May 2009 by adding the assimilation high-temporal tall-tower data.


ECMWF will run the system behind real time, about 3 to 6 months late, to produce operational estimates of sources or sinks based on IASI, CrIS, OCO, and GOSAT. It will prepare to incorporate CO2 data from an active system.

livestock stocking levels). Developing ways to ensure both the availability and the quality of these key in situ observations should be a part of the NASA investment in Earth science.

The data from Earth-sensing satellites can be fully exploited only if the satellite missions are designed as a package that includes essential ground-based and aircraft-based studies (see the section “Carbon Budget” above in this chapter, for example). Those range in intent from algorithm development to studies designed to provide a broader context for the remote-sensing results. In many cases, modest investments in ground-based studies can dramatically amplify the value of remote-sensing information. NASA is often the only federal agency positioned to make the investments that can take advantage of the complementary nature between satellite and ground-based observations.

Synerges with the Observations of Other Panels

Many of the observations and technologies recommended by this panel intersect with requirements identified by other panels (as listed in Table 7.1). For example, the ecosystem-structure and biomass mission is synergistic with the needs of the solid-Earth community for radar measurements. To the degree that multiple objectives can be achieved with suites of observations from the same sensor, the panel fully supports the approach of identifying opportunities for synergy with other panels.


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Asner, G.P., D.C.Nepstad, G.Cardinot, and D.Ray. 2004. Drought stress and carbon uptake in an Amazon forest measured with spaceborne imaging spectroscopy. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 101:6039–6044.

Behrenfeld, M.J., E.Boss, D.Siegel, and D.Shea. 2005. Carbon-based ocean productivity and phytoplankton physiology from space. Global Biogeochem. Cy. 19:061006, doi:10.1029/2004GB002299.

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