Crucial FEWSION Episode 9: Net Primary Production – From A Pixel to the Planet

Earth’s Primary Life Support System … And Why It’s Important To Understand How Humans Are Changing It


Net Primary Production (NPP) is the term used for the amount of biomass stored when plants take in carbon dioxide (CO­2) and water that they don’t subsequently release. And this Net Primary Production is the building block for nearly all ecosystems on earth – it provides us with everything we eat. In Episode 9 of Crucial FEWSION we hear about the latest research on how Humans Appropriate that Net Primary Production, called HANPP for short, from researchers Suman Paudel, Kaeli Mueller, and Assistant Professor Gustavo Ovando Montejo, all lead by Professor Christopher Lant at Utah State University. So, get ready for some staggering planetary statistics as we explore HANPP, its history … and why what happens to it in the future is so important.


Produced by Diane Hope, Ph.D. Funded by the National Science Foundation.


Inner Lakes by North Hive; Gaia by Drake Stafford; Building Pumping by Soularflair; and Gaia by SPCZ. All used under a Creative Commons license from the Free Music Archive.

Research papers mentioned in Episode 9:

Costanza, R., Fisher, B., Mulder K., Liu, S. & Christophe, T. (2017). Biodiversity and ecosystem services: A multi-scale empirical study of the relationship between species richness and net primary production. Ecological Economics: March 2017, 61, 478-491. 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2006.03.021

Krausmann, F., Erb, K.H., Gingrich, S., Haberl, H., Bondeau, A.,  Gaube, V., Lauk, C., Plutzar, C. & Searchinger, T.D. (2013). “Global HANPP trends.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: Jun 2013, 110 (25) 10324-10329; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1211349110.

Paudel, S., Ovando-Montejo, G. & Lant, C. (2021). “Human Appropriation of Net Primary production: From a Planet to a Pixel.” Sustainability: vol. 13, no. 15, 2021. 10.3390/su13158606

Episode 9 Resources:

Transcript of Episode 9

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