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  • Eddy Covariance and Meteorological Data in the Clearcut Site at Harvard Forest since 2009
  • Williams, Christopher
  • 2015
  • Clearcutting and other forest disturbances perturb carbon, water, and energy balances in significant ways, with corresponding influences on Earth’s climate system through biogeochemical and biogeophysical effects. Observations are needed to quantify the precise changes in these balances as they vary across diverse disturbances of different types, severities, and in various climate and ecosystem type settings. This dataset reports eddy covariance and micrometeorological measurements of surface-atmosphere exchanges that can be combined with related datasets from vegetation inventories and chamber-based estimates of soil respiration and leaf gas exchange to collectively quantify and understand how carbon, water, and energy fluxes changed during the first four years following forest clearing in a temperate forest environment of the northeastern US. Associated publications show rapid recovery with sustained increases in gross ecosystem productivity (GEP) over the first three growing seasons post-clearing, coincident with large and relatively stable net emission of CO2 because of overwhelmingly large ecosystem respiration. The rise in GEP was attributed to vegetation changes not environmental conditions (e.g. weather), but attribution to the expansion of leaf area versus changes in vegetation composition remains unclear. Soil respiration was estimated to contribute 44% of total ecosystem respiration during summer months and coarse woody debris accounted for another 18%. Evapotranspiration also recovered rapidly and continued to rise across years with a corresponding decrease in sensible heat flux. Gross shortwave and longwave radiative fluxes were stable across years except for strong wintertime dependence on snow covered conditions and corresponding variation in albedo. Overall, these findings underscore the highly dynamic nature of carbon and water exchanges and vegetation composition during the regrowth following a severe forest disturbance, and sheds light on both the magnitude of such changes and the underlying mechanisms with a unique example from a temperate, deciduous broadleaf forest.
  • N: 42.546      S: 42.546      E: -72.174      W: -72.174
  • This dataset is released to the public and may be freely downloaded. Please keep the designated Contact person informed of any plans to use the dataset. Consultation or collaboration with the original investigators is strongly encouraged. Publications and data products that make use of the dataset must include proper acknowledgement. For more information on LTER Network data access and use policies, please see:
  • doi:10.6073/pasta/b11408850a211b207e968d19b1a83a03
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