Relationship between variability in aboveground net primary production and precipitation in global grasslands

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Abstract

[1] Aboveground net primary production (ANPP) is strongly correlated with annual precipitation (AP) in grassland ecosystems. However, the relationship between the interannual variation in ANPP and the variability in precipitation remains controversial. In this study, we used long-term data of biomass and precipitation from 118 sites across global grasslands to examine the relationship between variability in ANPP and AP. Our results showed that ANPP increased with precipitation, but leveled off in humid regions, and that increased variation in precipitation led to an increase in the variability in ANPP. The relative ANPP maxima significantly increased with relative AP maxima and the relative ANPP minima also positively correlated with relative AP minima. These suggest that the fluctuations in precipitation can alter the growth of grasslands, which should be incorporated into the prediction and modeling of climate changes.

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