Overview of FFPRI FluxNet

Background

To mitigate global warming, it is important to somehow reduce the amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide, which increases with increased use of fossil fuels. Much hope is being placed on maximizing the ability of forests to absorb carbon dioxide as a measure to reduce the concentration of global carbon dioxide. However, the technology for managing forests, which is associated with global warming prevention, has not been sufficiently established. The acquisition of sufficient scientific knowledge is being urgently pursued in order to evaluate and make effective use of forests.

The leaves of the trees that compose the forest absorb atmospheric carbon dioxide via photosynthesis. On the other hand, trees respire, the same as humans, and release carbon dioxide. In addition, carbon dioxide is also released from the forest floor by the decomposition of organic matter. Consequently, the volume absorbed by photosynthesis in the forest is not all stored in the forest. Because the mechanism for absorbing and releasing carbon dioxide is complex, the approaches to research the clarification of the carbon cycle mechanism corresponding to the climate and forest type are varied.

Because of these factors, the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute formed a research group (Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute Flux Observation Network: FFPRI FluxNet) to perform observational research focused on measuring carbon dioxide flux using micrometeorological techniques at six research sites in Japan (currently, five continue observations).

Objectives

Our objectives are:

- Evaluation and prediction of the change in the volume of carbon dioxide absorbed

- Clarification and modeling of the process that transports heat, water vapor, and carbon dioxide between the forest and atmosphere

- Collection and accumulation of data to verify the model

Measurement techniques have been improved so that an accurate evaluation of the amount of carbon dioxide absorbed by the forest can be performed in order to clarify the carbon cycle mechanism corresponding to various climates and forest types. In addition, questions such as "How much carbon dioxide is absorbed by forest from the atmosphere?" and "What kind of mechanism performs this and how can we make predictions?" will be clarified through this observational research.

Framework of FFPRI FluxNet

The majority of the burden for this observational research will be borne by the research group focusing on forest meteorology in the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute. The several laboratories that span the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute headquarters and branches established various sites in forests corresponding to different climatic zones and forest types, primarily to observe flux and meteorology. These sites observe the transport of carbon dioxide and energy between the forest and the atmosphere. In order to maintain observational precision and to support flexibility in the observation and analytical techniques as well as to collect independent observational research and give estimates for larger forests, it is necessary to maintain strong cooperation among the observational sites. For this reason, this observational research has been grouped under the name of the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute Flux Observation Network to promote this observational research while taking into account the features of the region based on shared purpose and observational items.

Collaboration to the international flux networks

Each region has a regional observational research network: AsiaFlux in Asia, AmeriFlux in North America, and CarboEurope in Europe. FLUXNET is a network that encompasses these regional networks and promotes development worldwide. FLUXNET promotes research such as creating and managing databases and integrated analysis.

Asia's AsiaFlux comprises JapanFlux from Japan, KoFlux from South Korea, and other observational research groups from other parts of Asia. FFPRI FluxNet participates in JapanFlux (AsiaFlux) as a group that performs continued observational research on forest ecosystems in Japan.

What is Flux?

Flux refers to the amount of matter and energy transported per unit area within a unit time.

FFPRI FluxNet logo mark

FFPRI FluxNet is primarily engaged in the observational research of carbon dioxide and energy flux in forests. Taking into consideration that the forest in Japan are mainly distributed in the mountainous regions, this logo was created by imagining the forest canopy and carbon dioxide and water molecules, which are the subject of observation.

Download: 300 x 219px (PNG)

Contact

FFPRI FluxNet Steering Committee:

Department of Disaster Prevention, Meteorology and Hydrology,
Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute,
1 Matsunosato, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, 305-8687 JAPAN
email: