Complexity revealed in the greening of the Arctic

Isla H. Myers-Smith*, Jeffrey T. Kerby, Gareth K. Phoenix, Jarle W. Bjerke, Howard E. Epstein, Jakob J. Assmann, Christian John, Laia Andreu-Hayles, Sandra Angers-Blondin, Pieter S.A. Beck, Logan T. Berner, Uma S. Bhatt, Anne D. Bjorkman, Daan Blok, Anders Bryn, Casper T. Christiansen, J. Hans C. Cornelissen, Andrew M. Cunliffe, Sarah C. Elmendorf, Bruce C. ForbesScott J. Goetz, Robert D. Hollister, Rogier de Jong, Michael M. Loranty, Marc Macias-Fauria, Kadmiel Maseyk, Signe Normand, Johan Olofsson, Thomas C. Parker, Frans Jan W. Parmentier, Eric Post, Gabriela Schaepman-Strub, Frode Stordal, Patrick F. Sullivan, Haydn J.D. Thomas, Hans Tømmervik, Rachael Treharne, Craig E. Tweedie, Donald A. Walker, Martin Wilmking, Sonja Wipf

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to JournalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

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    As the Arctic warms, vegetation is responding, and satellite measures indicate widespread greening at high latitudes. This ‘greening of the Arctic’ is among the world’s most important large-scale ecological responses to global climate change. However, a consensus is emerging that the underlying causes and future dynamics of so-called Arctic greening and browning trends are more complex, variable and inherently scale-dependent than previously thought. Here we summarize the complexities of observing and interpreting high-latitude greening to identify priorities for future research. Incorporating satellite and proximal remote sensing with in-situ data, while accounting for uncertainties and scale issues, will advance the study of past, present and future Arctic vegetation change.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)106-117
    Number of pages12
    JournalNature Climate Change
    Issue number2
    Early online date31 Jan 2020
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020


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