Autumn canopy senescence has slowed down with global warming since the 1980s in the northern hemisphere

Zhang, Yichen; Hong, Songbai; Liu, Qiang; Huntingford, Chris ORCID:; Peñuelas, Josep; Rossi, Sergio; Myneni, Ranga B.; Piao, Shilong. 2023 Autumn canopy senescence has slowed down with global warming since the 1980s in the northern hemisphere. Communications Earth & Environment, 4, 173. 9, pp.

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Climate change strongly impact vegetation phenology, with considerable potential to alter land-atmosphere carbon dioxide exchange and terrestrial carbon cycle. In contrast to well-studied spring leaf-out, the timing and magnitude of autumn senescence remains poorly understood. Here, we use monthly decreases in Normalized Difference Vegetation Index satellite retrievals and their trends to surrogate the speed of autumn senescence during 1982–2018 in the Northern Hemisphere (>30°N). We find that climate warming accelerated senescence in July, but this influence usually reversed in later summer and early autumn. Interestingly, summer greening causes canopy senescence to appear later compared to an advancing trend after eliminating the greening effect. This finding suggests that summer canopy greening may counteract the intrinsic changes in autumnal leaf senescence. Our analysis of autumn vegetation behavior provides reliable guidance for developing and parameterizing land surface models that contain an interactive dynamic vegetation module for placement in coupled Earth System Models.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Hydro-climate Risks (Science Area 2017-)
ISSN: 2662-4435
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Open Access paper - full text available via Official URL link.
Additional Keywords: climate change, climate-change ecology, ecosystem ecology, phenology
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
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Date made live: 08 Nov 2023 08:29 +0 (UTC)

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