Center for Geospatial Analytics Calendar
Geospatial Forum with Dr. James Wickham – Those Hot, Hot Temperate Forests
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Dr. James Wickham | Senior Research Biologist | US Environmental Protection Agency
Abstract: Preserving and restoring the world’s forests is regarded as having a positive (cooling) effect on a warming climate. However, some have cautioned against reforestation and afforestation as a climate-warming-mitigation strategy outside of tropical regions, without considering the potentially counteracting biophysical effects (albedo, transpiration) in tandem with the beneficial biogeochemical effects (carbon sequestration). We use MODIS land surface temperature (LST) and albedo data in conjunction with the Landsat-based National Land Cover Database (NLCD) land cover data to show empirically that United States temperate forests are not a source of heat relative to surrounding herbaceous vegetation (croplands, grasslands).