Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Comparison of remote sensing and plant trait-based modelling to predict ecosystem services in subalpine grasslands


Homolová, Lucie; Schaepman, Michael E; Lamarque, Pénélope; Clevers, Jan G P W; de Bello, Francesco; Thuiller, Wilfried; Lavorel, Sandra (2014). Comparison of remote sensing and plant trait-based modelling to predict ecosystem services in subalpine grasslands. Ecosphere, 5(8):art100.

Abstract

There is a growing demand for spatially explicit assessment of multiple ecosystem services (ES) and remote sensing (RS) can provide valuable data to meet this challenge. In this study, located in the Central French Alps, we used high spatial and spectral resolution RS images to assess multiple ES based on underpinning ecosystem properties (EP) of subalpine grasslands. We estimated five EP (green biomass, litter mass, crude protein content, species diversity and soil carbon content) from RS data using empirical RS methods and maps of ES were calculated as simple linear combinations of EP. Additionally, the RSbased results were compared with results of a plant trait-based statistical modelling approach that predicted EP and ES from land use, abiotic and plant trait data (modelling approach). The comparison between the RS and the modelling approaches showed that RS-based results provided better insight into the fine-grained spatial distribution of EP and thereby ES, whereas the modelling approach reflected the land use signal that underpinned trait-based models of EP. The spatial agreement between the two approaches at a 20-m resolution varied between 16 and 22% for individual EP, but for the total ecosystem service supply it was only 7%. Furthermore, the modelling approach identified the alpine grazed meadows land use class as areas with high values of multiple ES (hot spots) and mown-grazed permanent meadows as areas with low values and only few ES (cold spots). Whereas the RS-based hot spots were a small subset of those predicted by the modelling approach, cold spots were rather scattered, small patches with limited overlap with the modelling results. Despite limitations associated with timing of assessment campaigns and field data requirements, RS offers valuable data for spatially continuous mapping of EP and can thus supply RS-based proxies of ES. Although the RS approach was applied to a limited area and for one type of ecosystem, we believe that the broader availability of high fidelity airborne and satellite RS data will promote RS-based assessment of ES to larger areas and other ecosystems.

Abstract

There is a growing demand for spatially explicit assessment of multiple ecosystem services (ES) and remote sensing (RS) can provide valuable data to meet this challenge. In this study, located in the Central French Alps, we used high spatial and spectral resolution RS images to assess multiple ES based on underpinning ecosystem properties (EP) of subalpine grasslands. We estimated five EP (green biomass, litter mass, crude protein content, species diversity and soil carbon content) from RS data using empirical RS methods and maps of ES were calculated as simple linear combinations of EP. Additionally, the RSbased results were compared with results of a plant trait-based statistical modelling approach that predicted EP and ES from land use, abiotic and plant trait data (modelling approach). The comparison between the RS and the modelling approaches showed that RS-based results provided better insight into the fine-grained spatial distribution of EP and thereby ES, whereas the modelling approach reflected the land use signal that underpinned trait-based models of EP. The spatial agreement between the two approaches at a 20-m resolution varied between 16 and 22% for individual EP, but for the total ecosystem service supply it was only 7%. Furthermore, the modelling approach identified the alpine grazed meadows land use class as areas with high values of multiple ES (hot spots) and mown-grazed permanent meadows as areas with low values and only few ES (cold spots). Whereas the RS-based hot spots were a small subset of those predicted by the modelling approach, cold spots were rather scattered, small patches with limited overlap with the modelling results. Despite limitations associated with timing of assessment campaigns and field data requirements, RS offers valuable data for spatially continuous mapping of EP and can thus supply RS-based proxies of ES. Although the RS approach was applied to a limited area and for one type of ecosystem, we believe that the broader availability of high fidelity airborne and satellite RS data will promote RS-based assessment of ES to larger areas and other ecosystems.

Statistics

Citations

4 citations in Web of Science®
8 citations in Scopus®
Google Scholar™

Altmetrics

Downloads

2 downloads since deposited on 12 Nov 2014
0 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, not refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:12 Nov 2014 13:47
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 18:29
Publisher:Ecological Society of America
ISSN:2150-8925
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1890/ES13-00393.1

Download