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Article

Time Series Analysis of Land Cover Change in Dry Mountains: Insights from the Tajik Pamirs

1
Institute of Geography, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, 91056 Erlangen, Germany
2
Department of Geography, University of Bayreuth, 95440 Bayreuth, Germany
3
Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research (BayCEER), University of Bayreuth, 95440 Bayreuth, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Brigitte Leblon and Jeff Harris
Remote Sens. 2021, 13(19), 3951; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13193951
Received: 3 August 2021 / Revised: 23 September 2021 / Accepted: 28 September 2021 / Published: 2 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Mapping Using Remote Sensing)
Greening and browning trends in vegetation have been observed in many regions of the world in recent decades. However, few studies focused on dry mountains. Here, we analyze trends of land cover change in the Western Pamirs, Tajikistan. We aim to gain a deeper understanding of these changes and thus improve remote sensing studies in dry mountainous areas. The study area is characterized by a complex set of attributes, making it a prime example for this purpose. We used generalized additive mixed models for the trend estimation of a 32-year Landsat time series (1988–2020) of the modified soil adjusted vegetation index, vegetation data, and environmental and socio-demographic data. With this approach, we were able to cope with the typical challenges that occur in the remote sensing analysis of dry and mountainous areas, including background noise and irregular data. We found that greening and browning trends coexist and that they vary according to the land cover class, topography, and geographical distribution. Greening was detected predominantly in agricultural and forestry areas, indicating direct anthropogenic drivers of change. At other sites, greening corresponds well with increasing temperature. Browning was frequently linked to disastrous events, which are promoted by increasing temperatures. View Full-Text
Keywords: greening; browning; Central Asia; global change; vegetation dynamics greening; browning; Central Asia; global change; vegetation dynamics
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MDPI and ACS Style

Vanselow, K.A.; Zandler, H.; Samimi, C. Time Series Analysis of Land Cover Change in Dry Mountains: Insights from the Tajik Pamirs. Remote Sens. 2021, 13, 3951. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13193951

AMA Style

Vanselow KA, Zandler H, Samimi C. Time Series Analysis of Land Cover Change in Dry Mountains: Insights from the Tajik Pamirs. Remote Sensing. 2021; 13(19):3951. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13193951

Chicago/Turabian Style

Vanselow, Kim André, Harald Zandler, and Cyrus Samimi. 2021. "Time Series Analysis of Land Cover Change in Dry Mountains: Insights from the Tajik Pamirs" Remote Sensing 13, no. 19: 3951. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs13193951

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