Modeling BVOC isoprene emissions based on a GIS and remote sensing database

Man Sing Wong, Md Latifur Rahman Sarker, Janet Elizabeth Nichol, Shuncheng Lee, Hongwei Chen, Yiliang Wan, P. W. Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents a geographic information systems (GIS) model to relate biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) isoprene emissions to ecosystem type, as well as environmental drivers such as light intensity, temperature, landscape factor and foliar density. Data and techniques have recently become available which can permit new improved estimates of isoprene emissions over Hong Kong. The techniques are based on Guenther et al.'s (1993, 1999) model. The spatially detailed mapping of isoprene emissions over Hong Kong at a resolution of 100 m and a database has been constructed for retrieval of the isoprene maps from February 2007 to January 2008. This approach assigns emission rates directly to ecosystem types not to individual species, since unlike in temperate regions where one or two single species may dominate over large regions, Hong Kong's vegetation is extremely diverse with up to 300 different species in 1 ha. Field measurements of emissions by canister sampling obtained a range of ambient emissions according to different climatic conditions for Hong Kong's main ecosystem types in both urban and rural areas, and these were used for model validation. Results show the model-derived isoprene flux to have high to moderate correlations with field observations (i.e. r2= 0.77, r2= 0.63, r2= 0.37 for all 24 field measurements, subset for summer, and winter data, respectively) which indicate the robustness of the approach when applied to tropical forests at detailed level, as well as the promising role of remote sensing in isoprene mapping. The GIS model and raster database provide a simple and low cost estimation of the BVOC isoprene in Hong Kong at detailed level. City planners and environmental authorities may use the derived models for estimating isoprene transportation, and its interaction with anthropogenic pollutants in urban areas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-77
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012


  • Biogenic volatile organic compounds
  • Foliar density
  • Leaf area index
  • Photosynthetically active radiation
  • Satellite image

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Computers in Earth Sciences
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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