What eddy-covariance measurements tell us about prior land flux errors in CO2-flux inversion schemes
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0.2 after 200 km). Separating out the plant functional types did not increase the spatial correlations, except for the deciduous broad-leaved forests. Using the statistics of the flux measurements as a proxy for the statistics of the prior flux errors was shown not to be a viable approach. A statistical model allowed us to upscale the site-level flux error statistics to the coarser spatial and temporal resolutions used in regional or global models. This approach allowed us to quantify how aggregation reduces error variances, while increasing correlations. As an example, for a typical inversion of grid point (300 km × 300 km) monthly fluxes, we found that the prior flux error follows an approximate e-folding correlation length of 500 km only, with correlations from one month to the next as large as 0.6.