Next Article in Journal
Advancing of Land Surface Temperature Retrieval Using Extreme Learning Machine and Spatio-Temporal Adaptive Data Fusion Algorithm
Next Article in Special Issue
Land Degradation Assessment Using Residual Trend Analysis of GIMMS NDVI3g, Soil Moisture and Rainfall in Sub-Saharan West Africa from 1982 to 2012
Previous Article in Journal
A Practical Split-Window Algorithm for Retrieving Land Surface Temperature from Landsat-8 Data and a Case Study of an Urban Area in China
Previous Article in Special Issue
What Four Decades of Earth Observation Tell Us about Land Degradation in the Sahel?
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Remote Sens. 2015, 7(4), 4391-4423; doi:10.3390/rs70404391

Drought Variability and Land Degradation in Semiarid Regions: Assessment Using Remote Sensing Data and Drought Indices (1982–2011)

1
Instituto Pirenaico de Ecología, Spanish National Research Council (IPE-CSIC), Campus de Aula Dei, P.O. Box 13034, E-50059 Zaragoza, Spain
2
Department of Economy, University of Alcala, E-28801 Madrid, Spain
3
Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies in Water (IMDEA-Water), Alcalá de Henares, E-28805 Madrid, Spain.
4
Estación Experimental de Aula Dei, Spanish National Research Council (EEAD-CSIC), Campus de Aula Dei, P.O. Box 13034, E-50059 Zaragoza, Spain
5
Hydrological Modeling & Earth Observation Group, WDRC, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, 23955-6900 Thuwal, Saudi Arabia
6
Department of Geography, Mansoura University, 35516 Mansoura, Egypt
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Arnon Karnieli, Soe Myint and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 25 December 2014 / Revised: 26 March 2015 / Accepted: 1 April 2015 / Published: 14 April 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Land Degradation in Drylands)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [21160 KB, uploaded 14 April 2015]   |  

Abstract

We analyzed potential land degradation processes in semiarid regions worldwide using long time series of remote sensing images and the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) for the period 1981 to 2011. The objectives of the study were to identify semiarid regions showing a marked decrease in potential vegetation activity, indicative of the occurrence of land degradation processes, and to assess the possible influence of the observed drought trends quantified using the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI). We found that the NDVI values recorded during the period of maximum vegetation activity (NDVImax) predominantly showed a positive evolution in the majority of the semiarid regions assessed, but NDVImax was highly correlated with drought variability, and the trends of drought events influenced trends in NDVImax at the global scale. The semiarid regions that showed most increase in NDVImax (the Sahel, northern Australia, South Africa) were characterized by a clear positive trend in the SPEI values, indicative of conditions of greater humidity and lesser drought conditions. While changes in drought severity may be an important driver of NDVI trends and land degradation processes in semiarid regions worldwide, drought did not apparently explain some of the observed changes in NDVImax. This reflects the complexity of vegetation activity processes in the world’s semiarid regions, and the difficulty of defining a universal response to drought in these regions, where a number of factors (natural and anthropogenic) may also affect on land degradation. View Full-Text
Keywords: Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI); NDVI; NOAA-AVHRR; GIMMS; desertification; vegetation recovery Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI); NDVI; NOAA-AVHRR; GIMMS; desertification; vegetation recovery
Figures

Figure 1

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).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Vicente-Serrano, S.M.; Cabello, D.; Tomás-Burguera, M.; Martín-Hernández, N.; Beguería, S.; Azorin-Molina, C.; Kenawy, A.E. Drought Variability and Land Degradation in Semiarid Regions: Assessment Using Remote Sensing Data and Drought Indices (1982–2011). Remote Sens. 2015, 7, 4391-4423.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Remote Sens. EISSN 2072-4292 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top