Web of Science: 31 citations, Scopus: 30 citations, Google Scholar: citations,
Human population growth offsets climate-driven increase in woody vegetation in sub-Saharan Africa
Brandt, Martin (University of Copenhagen. Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management)
Rasmussen, Kjeld (University of Copenhagen. Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management)
Peñuelas, Josep (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Departament de Biologia Animal, de Biologia Vegetal i d'Ecologia)
Verger Ten, Aleixandre (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i Aplicacions Forestals)

Date: 2017
Abstract: The rapidly growing human population in sub-Saharan Africa generates increasing demand for agricultural land and forest products which presumably leads to deforestation. Conversely, a greening of African drylands has been reported, but this has been difficult to associate with changes in woody vegetation. There is thus an incomplete understanding of how woody vegetation responds to socio-economic and environmental change. Here we used a passive microwave Earth Observation data set to document two different trends in woody cover land area for 1992-2011: an 36% increase (6,870,000 km²), largely in drylands, and an 11% decrease (2,150,000 km²), mostly in humid zones. Increases in woody cover were associated with low population growth and driven by increases in CO2 in the humid zones and by increases in precipitation in drylands, whereas decreases in woody cover were associated with high population growth. The spatially distinct pattern of these opposing trends reflects (1) the natural response of vegetation to precipitation and atmospheric CO2 and (2) deforestation in humid areas, minor in size but important for ecosystem services, such as biodiversity and carbon stocks. This nuanced picture of changes in woody cover challenges widely held views of a general and ongoing reduction of the woody vegetation in Africa.
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció EC/H2020/656564
Note: Número d'acord de subvenció EC/FP7/610028
Rights: Tots els drets reservats
Language: Anglès.
Document: article ; recerca ; acceptedVersion
Published in: Nature ecology and evolution, Vol. 1, art. 0081 (March 2017) , ISSN 2397-334X

DOI: 10.1038/s41559-017-0081

Article. Post-print
16 p, 121.8 KB

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1 p, 4.1 MB

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The record appears in these collections:
Research literature > UAB research groups literature > Research Centres and Groups (scientific output) > Experimental sciences > CREAF (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i d'Aplicacions Forestals) > Imbalance-P
Articles > Research articles
Articles > Published articles

 Record created 2017-04-07, last modified 2019-02-13

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