The main objective of the SnowCarbo project is to implement and demonstrate a new innovative approach for the net carbon balance mapping in Europe and northern Eurasian region. This approach is based on a combination of different information sources describing snow evolution, phenology, land cover, CO2 fluxes and concentrations. The implemented method combines local in situ observations and global Earth observation satellite data together with land cover class information in a new way. SnowCarbo aims to produce carbon balance maps over northern Europe and northern Eurasia by combining different data sources and modelling of CO2 balance. The results can be implemented into the European and national adaptation strategies to the impacts of climate change and to support the formulation of the environmental legislations and regulations.
The reason for starting the SnowCarbo project was that one of the key problems in the climate change prediction and monitoring is the lack of accurate observations of the magnitudes of carbon sinks and sources of boreal forests. The observations are currently carried out with higher precision only at individual observation sites. The monitoring over large regions is at the moment very coarse. This handicaps the performance of climate models and the evaluation of anthropogenic influences on climate change. The mapping of carbon sinks is a major issue concerning the implementation of Kyoto protocol and concerning future climate treaties. By obtaining improved information on the magnitudes and locations of real natural carbon sources and sinks, and improvements in the assessment of the levels of anthropogenic sources, the future environmental legislation/regulations can be based on more realistic carbon emission figures.
SnowCarbo project is funded by the European commission (EC) Life+ program. The project was started at the beginning of January 2009 and it will end in December 2012.
For more information:
Photo taken by Matias Takala