Australia experienced multi-year drought, record high temperatures and forest fires over the extensive areas of southeast Australia in 2019 and early 2020. The knowledge on the recovery of vegetation cover and above ground biomass (AGB) over the forest area in Australia is very limited, and a continental scale assessment of the recovery of forest areas hadn’t previously been completed. For the first time, this study uses a satellite-based analysis to assess the losses and gains of vegetation cover and AGB in forest areas in Australia due to the concurrent effects of drought, high temperatures, finding there were large losses in 2019 driven by fires and climate (drought and high temperature), but large gains in 2020 resulting from the high resilience of most trees to fire and rapid growth of under-story vegetation under wet conditions from a moderate La Niña.
Read more: Qin, Y., Xiao, X., Wigneron, J.-P., Ciais, P., Canadell, J. G., Brandt, M., Li, X., Fan, L., Wu, X., Tang, H., Dubayah, R., Doughty, R., Crowell, S., Zheng, B., & Moore, B. (2022). Large loss and rapid recovery of vegetation cover and aboveground biomass over forest areas in Australia during 2019–2020. Remote Sensing of Environment, 278, 113087. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2022.113087