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Canadian journal of Soil Sciences
Year: 2010  |  Volume: 90  |  Issue: 2  |  Page No.: 373 - 385

Development and evaluation of a Canadian agricultural ecodistrict climate database

H. Xu, R. De Jong, S. Gameda and B. Qian    

Abstract: Spatially representative climate data are required input in various agricultural and environmental modelling studies. An agricultural ecodistrict climate database for Canada was developed from climate station data using a spatial interpolation procedure. This database includes daily maximum and minimum air temperatures, precipitation and incoming global solar radiation, which are necessary inputs for many agricultural modelling studies. The spatial interpolation procedure combines inverse distance squared weighting with the nearest neighbour approach. Cross-validation was performed to evaluate the accuracy of the interpolation procedure. In addition to some common error measurements, such as mean biased error and root mean square error, empirical probability distributions and accurate rates of precipitation occurrence were also examined. Results show that the magnitude of errors for this database was similar to those in other studies that used similar or different interpolation procedures. The average root mean square error (RMSE) was 1.7°C, 2.2°C and 3.8 mm for daily maximum and minimum temperature, and precipitation, respectively. The RMSE for solar radiation varied from 16 to 19% of the climate normal during April through September and from 21 to 28% of the climate normal during the remainder of the year.

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