Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2010, Vol. 20 ›› Issue (3): 323-332.doi: 10.1007/s11442-010-0323-6

• Eco-geography •     Next Articles

Spatial and temporal variation of global LAI during 1981–2006

LIU Siliang1,2, LIU Ronggao1, LIU Yang1,2   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2009-08-07 Revised:2009-12-18 Online:2010-06-15 Published:2010-06-15
  • Contact: Liu Ronggao, E-mail:
  • About author:Liu Siliang (1986–), MA Candidate, specialized in quantitative remote sensing. E-mail:
  • Supported by:

    863 Program, No.2007AA12Z158; National Science & Technology Pillar Program, No.2006BAC08B04; 2008BAK50B06; 2008BAK49B01


Earth is always changing. Knowledge about where changes happened is the first step for us to understand how these changes affect our lives. In this paper, we use a long-term leaf area index data (LAI) to identify where changes happened and where has experienced the strongest change around the globe during 1981–2006. Results show that, over the past 26 years, LAI has generally increased at a rate of 0.0013 per year around the globe. The strongest increasing trend is around 0.0032 per year in the middle and northern high latitudes (north of 30°N). LAI has prominently increased in Europe, Siberia, Indian Peninsula, America and south Canada, South region of Sahara, southwest corner of Australia and Kgalagadi Basin; while noticeably decreased in Southeast Asia, southeastern China, central Africa, central and southern South America and arctic areas in North America.

Key words: global change, leaf area index, spatiotemporal variation, hot-spot areas