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Open AccessArticle

Assessing Terrestrial Ecosystem Resilience using Satellite Leaf Area Index

by Jinhui Wu 1 and Shunlin Liang 2,*
State Key Laboratory of Remote Sensing Science, Faculty of Geography Science, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Remote Sens. 2020, 12(4), 595;
Received: 6 January 2020 / Revised: 5 February 2020 / Accepted: 6 February 2020 / Published: 11 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Environmental Health Resilience)
Quantitative approaches to measuring and assessing terrestrial ecosystem resilience, which expresses the ability of an ecosystem to recover from disturbances without shifting to an alternative state or losing function and services, is critical and essential to forecasting how terrestrial ecosystems will respond to global change. However, global and continuous terrestrial resilience measurement is fraught with difficulty, and the corresponding attribution of resilience dynamics is lacking in the literature. In this study, we assessed global terrestrial ecosystem resilience based on the long time-series GLASS LAI product and GIMMS AVHRR LAI 3g product, and validated the results using drought and fire events as the main disturbance indicators. We also analyzed the spatial and temporal variations of global terrestrial ecosystem resilience and attributed their dynamics to climate change and environmental factors. The results showed that arid and semiarid areas exhibited low resilience. We found that evergreen broadleaf forest exhibited the highest resilience (mean resilience value (from GLASS LAI): 0.6). On a global scale, the increase of mean annual precipitation had a positive impact on terrestrial resilience enhancement, while we found no consistent relationships between mean annual temperature and terrestrial resilience. For terrestrial resilience dynamics, we observed three dramatic raises of disturbance frequency in 1989, 1995, and 2001, respectively, along with three significant drops in resilience correspondingly. Our study mapped continuous spatiotemporal variation and captured interannual variations in terrestrial ecosystem resilience. This study demonstrates that remote sensing data are effective for monitoring terrestrial resilience for global ecosystem assessment. View Full-Text
Keywords: terrestrial disturbance; leaf area index; remote sensing; spatiotemporal variation; ecosystem resilience terrestrial disturbance; leaf area index; remote sensing; spatiotemporal variation; ecosystem resilience
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wu, J.; Liang, S. Assessing Terrestrial Ecosystem Resilience using Satellite Leaf Area Index. Remote Sens. 2020, 12, 595.

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