Due to the heterogeneity and complexity of terrestrial ecosystems of East Asia, a better understanding of relationships between climate change and net primary productivity (NPP) distribution is important to predict future carbon dynamics. The objective of this study is to analyze the temporal-spatial patterns of NPP in East Asia (10°S - 55°N, 60 - 155°E) from 1982 to 2006 using the process-based Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator (BEPS) model. Prior to the regional simulation, the annual simulated NPP was validated using field observed NPP demonstrating the ability of BEPS to simulate NPP in different ecosystems of East Asia.
Simulated NPP exhibited a southeast-northwest decreasing distribution, above 1000 g C m-2 yr-1 in most areas of Southeast Asia and below 50 g C m-2 yr-1 in northwestern China. The annual total of simulated NPP was 11.27 Pg C yr-1 (~18.78% of the global total) averaged over 25 years from 1982 to 2006. Total NPP increased by 7.33%, mainly in the northwestern part of the study area. The change of NPP was determined by precipitation in northern and southwestern regions, vapor pressure deficit and precipitation in North and Northeast Plains of China, radiation in South China, and temperature on the Tibetan Plateau. Climate was the main factor regulating the NPP trends in the interior and northern parts of the study area while the change in leaf area index was the factor dominating the trends of NPP in the eastern part of the study area.