Title: On The Response Of The European Vegetation Phenology To Hydroclimatic Anomalies
Citation: REMOTE SENSING vol. 6 no. 4 p. 3143-3169
Publisher: MDPI AG
Publication Year: 2014
JRC N°: JRC88507
ISSN: 2072-4292
URI: http://www.mdpi.com/2072-4292/6/4/3143
DOI: 10.3390/rs6043143
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Climate change is expected to alter vegetation and carbon cycle processes, with implications for ecosystems and feedback to regional and global climate. Notably, understanding the sensitivity of vegetation to the anomalies of precipitation and temperature over different land cover classes and the corresponding temporal response is essential for improved climate prediction. In this paper, we analyse vegetation response to hydroclimatic forcings using the Fraction of Absorbed Photosynthetically Active Radiation (FAPAR) derived from SeaWiFS (1998-2002) and MERIS (2003-2011) sensors at 1 km resolution. Based on land cover and pixel-wise analysis, we quantify the extent of the dependence between the FAPAR, and ultimately the phenology, and the anomalies of precipitation and temperature over Europe. Statistical tests are performed to establish where this correlation may be regarded as statistically dependent. Further, we assess a statistical link between the climate variables and a set of phenological metrics defined from FAPAR measurement. Variation in the phenological response to the unusual values of precipitation and temperature can be interpreted as the result of balanced opposite effects of water and temperature on vegetation processes. Results suggest very different responses on different land cover classes and timing seasons. The degree of observed coupled behaviour also indicates that European phenology may be quite sensitive to the perturbations in precipitation and temperature regimes such as those induced by the climate change.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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