Special Issue "Applications of Remote Sensing in Rangelands Research"
A special issue of Remote Sensing (ISSN 2072-4292).
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (26 July 2020).
Interests: dryland ecology; LiDAR; remote sensing; rangeland management
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Interests: Application of remote sensing to solve problems in natural resource management, geology, landscape ecology and archeology. Airborne digital photography, ecosystem modeling, GIS database development to aid in resource management and research. Development of analytical techniques for analyzing spatial data. Research in Western U.S., Mexico, Egypt, Iceland, India, and China in semi-arid, forested, agricultural, and urbanized landscapes
According to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), drylands make up some 41% of the terrestrial surface and provide ~ 1 billion humans with US $1 trillion dollars in ecosystem services that include food, fiber, shelter, clothing, and energy. Despite this justification for the necessity of conducting research to understand the sustainability of drylands, a large uncertainty still remains as to the degree of dryland degradation, estimated at between 10–50 %. This is due in part to drylands being understudied in comparison to forest ecosystems, particularly in the application of remote sensing technologies to understand their ecological dynamics.
To address the issue of bias in dryland remote sensing research, in 2013 we conducted a keyword search across published journal articles for the word “Landsat”. This resulted 14,326 hits which were subsequently searched for articles containing “forest(s) and tree(s)” while excluding “rangelands, grazing, shrublands, shrub, grassland, semi-arid and arid land”. This search yielded 3,222 hits. We then searched the 14,236 hits for the keywords: “rangelands, grazing, shrublands, shrub, grassland, grass, semi-arid and arid lands” and excluded “forest(s) and tree(s) from the search yielding 1,692 papers. Consequently, of the total of 4,914 forest and tree and rangeland remote sensing papers, drylands made up 34% of the remote sensing papers and forests (and other classes) accounted for 66%, thus indicating a bias towards forest remote sensing and support for the view that drylands are understudied.
This lack of research into drylands has led to surprises or counterintuitive findings that are consistent with drylands exhibiting complex systems behavior including multiple dynamic regimes and both discontinuous (i.e., thresholds) and continuous behavior. Surprises like the discovery that drylands that evolved under grazing show compensatory feedbacks under moderate grazing regimes, or that in 2011 drylands were globally the largest carbon sink rather than forests, and that drylands exhibited carbon dynamics that are similar to deciduous forests. These and future findings are of critical importance if we are to understand the role of drylands in the Earth system.
Consequently, to close the knowledge gap and to increase the publication of remote sensing studies on drylands we offer this Special Issue to our colleagues that will include, but will not be limited to, the following topics on the remote sensing of drylands:
- Land Use/Land Cover Change (Ecological Sites/State-and-Transition Models)
- Detection and Assessment of Belowground Biomass
- Use of Lidar for Above-Ground Carbon Storage in Drylands
- Dryland Ecohydrology/Soil Moisture Assessments
- Use of Emerging Technologies
- Soil Erosion
- Terrestrial Laser Scanning
- National Level Early Warning Systems
Dr. R. Douglas Ramsey
Manuscript Submission Information
Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.
Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Remote Sensing is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.
Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.
- Belowground Biomass
- Aboveground Biomass (AGB)
- Net Primary Productivity (NPP)
- Early Warning Systems
- Dynamic Regimes
- Catastrophe Theory
- Ground Penetrating Radar
- Terrestrial Laser Scanning
- Solar Induced Florescence
- Forage Quality