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Journal Article




Office of Research and Innovation




Originally published as: Liu, N., Harper, R. J., Handcock, R. N., Evans, B., Sochacki, S. J., Dell, B., ... & Liu, S. (2017). Seasonal Timing for Estimating Carbon Mitigation in Revegetation of Abandoned Agricultural Land with High Spatial Resolution Remote Sensing. Remote Sensing, 9(6), 545. Original article available here


Dryland salinity is a major land management issue globally, and results in the abandonment of farmland. Revegetation with halophytic shrub species such as Atriplex nummularia for carbon mitigation may be a viable option but to generate carbon credits ongoing monitoring and verification is required. This study investigated the utility of high-resolution airborne images (Digital Multi Spectral Imagery (DMSI)) obtained in two seasons to estimate carbon stocks at the plant- and stand-scale. Pixel-scale vegetation indices, sub-pixel fractional green vegetation cover for individual plants, and estimates of the fractional coverage of the grazing plants within entire plots, were extracted from the high-resolution images. Carbon stocks were correlated with both canopy coverage (R2: 0.76–0.89) and spectral-based vegetation indices (R2: 0.77–0.89) with or without the use of the near-infrared spectral band. Indices derived from the dry season image showed a stronger correlation with field measurements of carbon than those derived from the green season image. These results show that in semi-arid environments it is better to estimate saltbush biomass with remote sensing data in the dry season to exclude the effect of pasture, even without the refinement provided by a vegetation classification. The approach of using canopy cover to refine estimates of carbon yield has broader application in shrublands and woodlands.



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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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