Articles | Volume 19, issue 23
Research article
05 Dec 2022
Research article |  | 05 Dec 2022

Drivers of intermodel uncertainty in land carbon sink projections

Ryan S. Padrón, Lukas Gudmundsson, Laibao Liu, Vincent Humphrey, and Sonia I. Seneviratne

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Cited articles

Arora, V. K., Boer, G. J., Friedlingstein, P., Eby, M., Jones, C. D., Christian, J. R., Bonan, G., Bopp, L., Brovkin, V., Cadule, P., Hajima, T., Ilyina, T., Lindsay, K., Tjiputra, J. F., and Wu, T.: Carbon–Concentration and Carbon–Climate Feedbacks in CMIP5 Earth System Models, J. Climate, 26, 5289–5314,, 2013. 
Bonan, G. B. and Doney, S. C.: Climate, ecosystems, and planetary futures: The challenge to predict life in Earth system models, Science (80-.), 359,, 2018. 
Canadell, J. G., Monteiro, P. M. S., Costa, M. H., Cotrim da Cunha, L., Cox, P. M., Eliseev, A. V., Henson, S., Ishii, M., Jaccard, S., Koven, C., Lohila, A., Patra, P. K., Piao, S., Rogelj, J., Syampungani, S., Zaehle, S., and Zickfeld, K.: Global Carbon and other Biogeochemical Cycles and Feedbacks, in: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, edited by: Masson-Delmotte, V., Zhai, P., Pirani, A., Connors, S. L., Péan, C., Berger, S., Caud, N., Chen, Y., Goldfarb, L., Gomis, M. I., Huang, M., Leitzell, K., Lonnoy, E., Matthews, J. B. R., Maycock, T. K., Waterfield, T., Yelekçi, O., Yu, R., and Zhou, B., Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, 673–816, 2021. 
Cox, P. M., Pearson, D., Booth, B. B., Friedlingstein, P., Huntingford, C., Jones, C. D., and Luke, C. M.: Sensitivity of tropical carbon to climate change constrained by carbon dioxide variability, Nature, 494, 341–344,, 2013. 
Short summary
The answer to how much carbon land ecosystems are projected to remove from the atmosphere until 2100 is different for each Earth system model. We find that differences across models are primarily explained by the annual land carbon sink dependence on temperature and soil moisture, followed by the dependence on CO2 air concentration, and by average climate conditions. Our insights on why each model projects a relatively high or low land carbon sink can help to reduce the underlying uncertainty.
Final-revised paper