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Simulating soil-plant-climate interactions and greenhouse gas exchange in boreal grasslands using the DNDC model


Forster, D and Deng, J and Harrison, MT and Shurpali, N, Simulating soil-plant-climate interactions and greenhouse gas exchange in boreal grasslands using the DNDC model, Land, 11, (11) Article 1947. ISSN 2073-445X (2022) [Refereed Article]

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2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) license (

DOI: doi:10.3390/land11111947


With global warming, arable land in boreal regions is tending to expand into high latitude regions in the northern hemisphere. This entails certain risks; such that inappropriate management could result in previously stable carbon sinks becoming sources. Agroecological models are an important tool for assessing the sustainability of long-term management, yet applications of such models in boreal zones are scarce. We collated eddy-covariance, soil climate and biomass data to evaluate the simulation of GHG emissions from grassland in eastern Finland using the process-based model DNDC. We simulated gross primary production (GPP), net ecosystem exchange (NEE) and ecosystem respiration (Reco) with fair performance. Soil climate, soil temperature and soil moisture at 5 cm were excellent, and soil moisture at 20 cm was good. However, the model overestimated NEE and Reco following crop termination and tillage events. These results indicate that DNDC can satisfactorily simulate GHG fluxes in a boreal grassland setting, but further work is needed, particularly in simulated second biomass cuts, the (>20 cm) soil layers and model response to management transitions between crop types, cultivation, and land use change.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:DNDC, model, grasslands, carbon, soil, Boreal, permafrost, greenhouse gas, livestock, net zero, carbon neutral, biodiversity, soil temperature, respiration, land-use change, LULUCF, forestry, cultivation, climate, methane, nitrous oxide, crop, yield
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Climate change science
Research Field:Greenhouse gas inventories and fluxes
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Mitigation of climate change
Objective Field:Management of greenhouse gas emissions from plant production
UTAS Author:Harrison, MT (Associate Professor Matthew Harrison)
ID Code:153990
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:TIA - Research Institute
Deposited On:2022-10-20
Last Modified:2022-12-14
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