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The carbon, nitrogen, and water cycles of terrestrial ecosystems are key processes of the biosphere biogeochemical cycle. These cycles not only influence ecosystem functions, including material production, water conservation, and nutrient retention, but also affect the global climate system, natural resources, and ecological environmental changes.
In 2001, supported by the Chinese Ecosystem Research Network (CERN) and a major project of the Knowledge Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences “Study on carbon budget in terrestrial and marginal sea ecosystems of China”, the Chinese Terrestrial Ecosystem Flux Observation and Research Network (ChinaFLUX) was established. As ChinaFLUX becomes a distinctive scientific observational research network, a series of continuously integrative observational studies have been conducted on the ecosystem carbon-nitrogen-water coupling cycles, and their response and adaptation to global change.
Over more than ten years, ChinaFLUX increased the number of observation sites, enhanced its spatial representability, expanded and upgraded its observation capacity. ChinaFLUX has now become an important part of the global flux observation and research network (FLUXNET). ChinaFLUX also takes the lead in the construction of flux stations for forestry, agricultural, and meteorological departments, as well as some universities. In 2014, the Chinese Flux Observation and Research League (new ChinaFLUX) was formed by combining ChinaFLUX with flux stations of departments. Presently, ChinaFLUX has 71 flux sites, including 22 forest sites, 17 grassland (desert) sites, 17 cropland sites, 13 wetland sites, 1 urban site and 1 lake sub-network, covering all major zonal ecosystem types in China. The national-scale ecosystem carbon, nitrogen, water, and energy flux observation and research network has thus been preliminarily established.
ChinaFLUX features a systematic design combining long-term continuous instrumental observations with controlled experiments. It emphasizes synthetic observations of multiple greenhouse gas fluxes, environmental elements, and ecological processes, as well as a coordinated observation of carbon-nitrogen-water fluxes and cycle processes. For more than 10 years, a series of key parameters for the carbon, nitrogen and water cycles (production, respiration, evapotranspiration, deposition of nitrogen, phosphorus and acid, vegetation carbon density, and biomass, etc.) in typical terrestrial ecosystems in China have been obtained from ChinaFLUX’s long-term observations, transect surveys, and regional remote sensing inversion, which enriched scientific data in China. Integration of these data is important for revealing the ecosystem material cycle processes, understanding the effect of global change on ecosystems, and optimizing the policy-making concerning ecosystem management.
In order to promote ecological research in China, especially the sharing of data concerning the carbon, nitrogen and water cycles and associated global changes, we launch the special issue on the Carbon, Nitrogen and Water Fluxes of Terrestrial Ecosystems in China and Their Auxiliary Parameters. A total of 9 papers are published in this issue, including 2 papers based on network observation, 5 based on literature compilation, and 2 for spatial raster data. The network observation datasets include data on the ChinaFLUX carbon and water fluxes from 2003 to 20051 and the atmospheric nitrogen, phosphorus, and acid deposition in China’s typical terrestrial ecosystems in 2013.2 The literature-based datasets include primary production, respiration and net production,3 actual evapotranspiration and water use efficiency,4 radiation and light-use efficiency,5 carbon density,6 and forest soil properties of eastern China.7 The spatial raster datasets include remote sensing inversion data for grassland aboveground biomass in northern China from 1982 to 2015,8 and atmospheric nitrogen deposition data in China from 1996 to 2015.9
Though data sharing has been recognized by the social and academic community as a scientific enterprise of great promise, it remains difficult to promote the development of scientific data sharing. Over the past decade, numerous approaches we have taken to promote data sharing in China. The China Ecosystem Research Network (CERN) formulated China’s first domestic data sharing regulations titled Data Sharing and Management Regulations for Ecosystem Research Network of Chinese Academy of Sciences, developed the first domestic Data Sharing System for Ecosystem Research Network, and organized the publication of CNERN’s observational data. In 2012, the China Ecosystem Observation and Research Dataset series was published, which included a total of 51 books in 4 volumes. Since its inception, ChinaFLUX has always adhered to the principle of data sharing. Based on the consensus reached among its network members, ChinaFLUX publicly released flux observations of 8 stations to the community in 2013 and participated in the International Flux Network (Asiaflux, Fluxnet) data sharing activities twice in 2009 and 2013. For over ten years, ChinaFLUX has provided more than 330 GB data serving both individual and major national academic research in the form of offline request and online sharing. This special issue exemplifies another attempt to explore a new mode of scientific data sharing, through which we expect to continue to provide data support for China's environmental and ecological research, ecological safety assessments, environmental protection, regional ecological governance, and policy-making concerning climate change mitigation.
Zhang L, Luo Y, Liu M et al. Carbon and water fluxes observed by the Chinese Flux Observation and Research Network (2003 – 2005). China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0028.zh
Zhu J, Wang Q, Yu H et al. Atmospheric nitrogen, phosphorus, and acid deposition in Chinese terrestrial ecosystems (2013). China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0030.zh
Chen Z, Yu G, Zhu X et al. A dataset of primary production, respiration and net production in Chinese typical terrestrial ecosystems based on literature integration. China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0024.zh
Zheng H, Yu G, Zhu X et al. A dataset of actual evapotranspiration and water use efficiency of typical terrestrial ecosystems in China (2000 – 2010). China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0034.zh
Zhu X, Yu G, He H et al. Radiation and light-use efficiency dataset of typical Chinese ecosystems (2002 – 2010). China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0035.zh
Xu L, He N & Yu G. A dataset of carbon density in Chinese terrestrial ecosystems (2010s). China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0026.zh
Xu L & He N. A dataset of forest soil properties in north-south transect of eastern China. China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0027.zh
Jiao C, Yu G, Chen Z et al. A dataset of grassland aboveground biomass in the northern temperate region and the Tibetan Plateau of China based on field investigation and remote sensing inversion (1982 – 2015). China Scientific Data 4(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0029.zh
How to cite this article
Yu G, He N & Chen Z. Introduction to Special Issue on the Carbon, Nitrogen, and Water Fluxes of Terrestrial Ecosystems in China and Their Auxiliary Parameters. China Scientific Data 1(2019). DOI: 10.11922/csdata.2018.0050.zh