PROGRESS AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR MONITORING GREENHOUSE GASES FLUXES IN MEXICAN ECOSYSTEMS: THE MEXFLUX NETWORK

Rodrigo Vargas, Enrico Yépez, José Luis Andrade, Gregorio Ángeles, Tulio Arredondo, Alejandro Castellanos, Josué Delgado, Jaime Garatuza-Payan, Eugenia González del Castillo, Walter Oechel, Arturo Sánchez-Azofeifa, Erik Velasco, Enrique Vivoni, Christopher Watts

Abstract

Understanding ecosystem processes from a functional point of view is essential to study relationships among climate variability, biogeochemical cycles, and surface-atmosphere interactions. Increasingly during the last decades, the eddy covariance (EC) method has been applied in terrestrial, marine and urban ecosystems to quantify fluxes of greenhouse gases (e.g., CO2, H2O) and energy (e.g., sensible and latent heat). Networks of EC systems have been established in different regions and have provided scientific information that has been used for designing environmental and adaptation policies. In this context, this article outlines the conceptual and technical framework for the establishment of an EC regional network (i.e., MexFlux) to measure the surface-atmosphere exchange of heat and greenhouse gases in Mexico. The goal of the network is to improve our understanding of how climate variability and environmental change influence the dynamics of Mexican ecosystems. First, we discuss the relevance of CO2 and water vapor exchange between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere. Second, we briefly describe the EC basis and present examples of measurements in two terrestrial and one urban ecosystems of Mexico. Finally, we describe the conceptual and operational goals at short-, medium-, and long-term scales for continuity of the MexFlux network.

Keywords

Environmental networks, eddy covariance, FLUXNET, greenhouse gases, long-term measurements, surface-air exchange.

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