Climate is both a product and a catalyst of interactions between a regions physical environment and the biosphere, all of which are driven by the sun and affected by human activities. The challenge is relating all these factors. Quantifying photosynthesis, respiration, and other biological processes that are components of carbon cycling is difficult because the metabolic flux of material and energy through cells, organisms, and ecosystems is tightly linked to a particular regions abiotic environmental factors (e.g., temperature, precipitation amounts and timing, geographical features, nutrient availability, length of days and seasons, and sunlight exposure). The range of geographic and ecophysiological regions to consider in models is enormous, but to truly understand how climate will affect valued goods and services (e.g., food, fiber, fuel, water and air quality, wildlife habitats, recreation, and aesthetics), climate projections must have the required detail to guide management decisions at both global and regional scales.
Credit or Source: Credit or Source: Office of Biological and Environmental Research of the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science. science.energy.gov/ber/
U.S. DOE. 2008. Carbon Cycling and Biosequestration: Report from the March 2008 Workshop, DOE/SC-108, U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science. (p. 7) (website)