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Journal of Applied Remote Sensing • Open Access

Vegetation greenness trend (2000 to 2009) and the climate controls in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau
Author(s): Li Zhang; Huadong Guo; Lei Ji; Liping Lei; Cuizhen Wang; Dongmei Yan; Bin Li; Jing Li

Paper Abstract

The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau has been experiencing a distinct warming trend, and climate warming has a direct and quick impact on the alpine grassland ecosystem. We detected the greenness trend of the grasslands in the plateau using Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer data from 2000 to 2009. Weather station data were used to explore the climatic drivers for vegetation greenness variations. The results demonstrated that the region-wide averaged normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) increased at a rate of 0.036  yr −1 . Approximately 20% of the vegetation areas, which were primarily located in the northeastern plateau, exhibited significant NDVI increase trend ([i]p -value <0.05 ). Only 4% of the vegetated area showed significant decrease trends, which were mostly in the central and southwestern plateau. A strong positive relationship between NDVI and precipitation, especially in the northeastern plateau, suggested that precipitation was a favorable factor for the grassland NDVI. Negative correlations between NDVI and temperature, especially in the southern plateau, indicated that higher temperature adversely affected the grassland growth. Although a warming climate was expected to be beneficial to the vegetation growth in cold regions, the grasslands in the central and southwestern plateau showed a decrease in trends influenced by increased temperature coupled with decreased precipitation.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 April 2013
PDF: 18 pages
J. Appl. Remote Sens. 7(1) 073572 doi: 10.1117/1.JRS.7.073572
Published in: Journal of Applied Remote Sensing Volume 7, Issue 1
Show Author Affiliations
Li Zhang, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (China)
Huadong Guo, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (China)
Lei Ji, ASRC Research and Technology Solutions (United States)
Liping Lei, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (China)
Cuizhen Wang, Univ. of Missouri-Columbia (United States)
Dongmei Yan, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (China)
Bin Li, Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (China)
Jing Li, Beijing Normal Univ. (China)


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