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Sustainability 2016, 8(4), 326; doi:10.3390/su8040326

Recent NDVI-Based Variation in Growth of Boreal Intact Forest Landscapes and Its Correlation with Climatic Variables

1,2
,
1,2
,
1,2,* and 1,2
1
Jiangsu Provincial Key Laboratory of Geographic Information Science and Technology, Nanjing University, Xianlin Road 163, Nanjing 210023, China
2
International Institute for Earth System Science, Nanjing University, Xianlin Road 163, Nanjing 210023, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Audrey L. Mayer
Received: 25 December 2015 / Revised: 23 March 2016 / Accepted: 29 March 2016 / Published: 1 April 2016
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Abstract

Intact Forest Landscape (IFL) is of great value in protecting biodiversity and supporting core ecological processes. It is important to analyze the spatial variation in the growth dynamics of IFL. This study analyzed the change of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) during the growing season (April–October) for boreal (45° N–70° N) IFLs and the correlation with climatic variables over the period of 2000–2013. Our results show 85.5% of boreal IFLs did not show a significant change in the NDVI after 2000, and only 10.2% and 4.3% exhibited a statistically significant increase (greening) or decrease (browning) in NDVI, respectively. About 60.9% of the greening boreal IFLs showed that an increasing NDVI was significantly correlated to climatic variables, especially an increasing growing season temperature (over 47.0%). For browning boreal IFLs, a decrease in temperature or an increase in dormancy period precipitation could be the prime reason for a significant decrease in the NDVI. However, about 64.6% of the browning boreal IFLs were insensitive to any of the climatic variables, indicating other factors, such as fire, had caused the browning. Although it did not show a significant trend, the NDVI of 51.3% of no-change boreal IFLs significantly correlated to climatic variables, especially growing season temperatures (over 37.6%). View Full-Text
Keywords: NDVI; changing trend; intact forest landscape; boreal plant NDVI; changing trend; intact forest landscape; boreal plant
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Jin, J.; Wang, Y.; Jiang, H.; Cheng, M. Recent NDVI-Based Variation in Growth of Boreal Intact Forest Landscapes and Its Correlation with Climatic Variables. Sustainability 2016, 8, 326.

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