Kittel, T.G.F., N.A. Rosenbloom, T.H. Painter, D.S. Schimel, and VEMAP Modeling Participants. 1995. The VEMAP integrated database for modeling United States ecosystem/vegetation sensitivity to climate change.  Journal of Biogeography 22: 857-862.


For the Vegetation/Ecosystem Modeling and Analysis Project (VEMAP), we developed a model database of climate, soils, and vegetation that was compatible with the requirements of 3 ecosystem physiology models and 3 vegetation lifeform distribution models.  A key constraint was temporal, spatial, and physical consistency among data layers to provide these daily or monthly timestep models with suitable common inputs for the purpose of model intercomparison.  The database is on a 0.5deg. latitude/longitude grid for the conterminous United States. The set has both daily and monthly representations of the same long-term climate.  Daily temperature and precipitation were stochastically simulated with WGEN and daily solar radiation and humidity empirically estimated with CLIMSIM.  We used orographically-adjusted precipitation, surface temperature and surface wind speed monthly means to maintain consistency among these fields and with vegetation distribution.  Vegetation classes were based on physiognomic and physiological properties that influence biogeochemical dynamics. Soils data include characteristics of the 1-4 dominant soils per cell to account for subgrid variability.