Terrestrial ecosystems capture the equivalent of around 30-40% of total anthropogenic CO2 emissions each year. Over the past decade, terrestrial carbon dynamics have been driven by a unique combination of climatic and atmospheric conditions, largely as a consequence of variable ENSO conditions. The land 'sink' appears to have increased in magnitude while at the same time become more variable year-to-year. Beyond climate change, land-cover change, and atmospheric CO2, I will discuss additional mechanisms thought to be responsible for recent trends and variability in the terrestrial carbon cycle.
Ben Poulter is a Research Scientist in the Biospheric Sciences Laboratory at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Previously, he has held positions at Montana State University, the Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, the Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL, and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). He received his PhD from Duke University in 2005.