Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Tidal wetland gross primary production across the continental United States, 2000–2019

January 24, 2020

We mapped tidal wetland gross primary production (GPP) with unprecedented detail for multiple wetland types across the continental United States (CONUS) at 16‐day intervals for the years 2000–2019. To accomplish this task, we developed the spatially explicit Blue Carbon (BC) model, which combined tidal wetland cover and field‐based eddy covariance tower data into a single Bayesian framework, and used a super computer network and remote sensing imagery (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Enhanced Vegetation Index). We found a strong fit between the BC model and eddy covariance data from 10 different towers (r2 = 0.83, p < 0.001, root‐mean‐square error = 1.22 g C/m2/day, average error was 7% with a mean bias of nearly zero). When compared with NASA's MOD17 GPP product, which uses a generalized terrestrial algorithm, the BC model reduced error by approximately half (MOD17 had r2 = 0.45, p < 0.001, root‐mean‐square error of 3.38 g C/m2/day, average error of 15%). The BC model also included mixed pixels in areas not covered by MOD17, which comprised approximately 16.8% of CONUS tidal wetland GPP. Results showed that across CONUS between 2000 and 2019, the average daily GPP per m2 was 4.32 ± 2.45 g C/m2/day. The total annual GPP for the CONUS was 39.65 ± 0.89 Tg C/year. GPP for the Gulf Coast was nearly double that of the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts combined. Louisiana alone accounted for 15.78 ± 0.75 Tg C/year, with its Atchafalaya/Vermillion Bay basin at 4.72 ± 0.14 Tg C/year. The BC model provides a robust platform for integrating data from disparate sources and exploring regional trends in GPP across tidal wetlands.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2020
Title Tidal wetland gross primary production across the continental United States, 2000–2019
DOI 10.1029/2019GB006349
Authors R.A. Feagin, I. Forbrich, T. P. Huff, J.G. Barr, J. Ruiz-Plancarte, J.D. Fuentes, R.G. Najjar, R. Vargas, A. Vazquez Lule, L. Windham-Myers, Kevin D. Kroeger, E. J. Ward, G. W. Moore, M. Leclerc, K. W. Krauss, C.L. Stagg, M. Alber, S. H. Knox, K. V. R. Schafer, T.S. Bianchi, J. A. Hutchings, H. Nahrawi, A. Noormets, B. Mitra, A. Jaimes, A.L. Hinson, Brian A. Bergamaschi, J.S. King, G. Miao
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Global Biogeochemical Cycles
Index ID 70208848
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization California Water Science Center; Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center