Next-Generation Ecosystem Experiments

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Science Highlights

  • Warmer, dryer conditions and more frequent disturbances are taking their toll on Arctic vegetation

    The Arctic tundra biome has become a hot spot of global environmental change because the vegetation and permafrost soils are strongly influenced by warming air temperatures and declining sea ice in the Arctic Ocean. In the late 1990s, global satellite observations revealed a sharp increase in the apparent productivity of tundra vegetation, a phenomenon that has come to be known as Arctic greening. Arctic greening is dynamically linked with Earth’s changing climate, interacting in complex ways with permafrost thaw, snow and sea ice change, and disturbances. However, the greening trend has not been universal, and some areas in the Arctic are even experiencing an opposite browning trend in response to disturbance and extreme weather events. 

    . Circumpolar MaxNDVI anomalies for the 2022 growing season relative to mean values (2000–2022) from the MODIS MCD13A1 v6.1 data set. The 2022 minimum sea ice extent is indicated by light shading.

Progress and Accomplishments

Recent Publications

  • Thaler, E. A., et al. “Estimating Snow Cover From High-Resolution Satellite Imagery By Thresholding Blue Wavelengths”. Remote Sensing Of Environment, 2023, p. 113403.

  • Yang, D., et al. “Integrating Very-High-Resolution Uas Data And Airborne Imaging Spectroscopy To Map The Fractional Composition Of Arctic Plant Functional Types In Western Alaska”. Remote Sensing Of Environment, 2023, p. 113430.

  • Shirley, I. A., et al. “Machine Learning Models Inaccurately Predict Current And Future High-Latitude C Balances”. Environmental Research Letters, 2023, p. 014026.