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Satellite observed rapid green fodder expansion in northeastern Tibetan Plateau from 2010 to 2019

Yang, Tong and Zhang, Geli and Li, Yuzhe and Fan, Jiangwen and Sun, Danfeng and Wang, Jie and Di, Yuanyuan and You, Nanshan and Liu, Ruoqi and Zhang, Qiang and Doughty, Russell B. (2021) Satellite observed rapid green fodder expansion in northeastern Tibetan Plateau from 2010 to 2019. International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation, 102 . Art. No. 102394. ISSN 0303-2434. doi:10.1016/j.jag.2021.102394.

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The livestock product consumption per capita in China has almost doubled in the past three decades. The planting of green fodder has increased in the agropastoral ecotone of China to meet the increasing demand for livestock feed, and the green fodder expansion can have subsequent consequences on the environment. However, information on the area and distribution of green fodder is very limited. Here, we developed a pixel- and phenology-based algorithm to map green fodder and track its dynamics in the northeastern Tibetan Plateau, a typical alpine pasture region in China, using all the available Landsat images and Google Earth Engine (GEE). We developed a simple approach for the rapid identification of green fodder fields by using a new green fodder index that considers the unique phenology of green fodder, which has higher greenness and water content in the late growing season than other vegetation. A total of 858 Landsat images were used to generate green fodder maps in northeastern Tibetan Plateau (including Zeku, Guinan, and Tongde Counties) in three periods (circa 2010, 2015, and 2019). The overall accuracies of our green fodder maps were 93–97% and the Matthews correlation coefficients were 0.76–0.83. We found a rapid expansion of green fodder from 16.3 km² in 2010 to 136.1 km² in 2019. Newly cultivated green fodder occurred in both existing croplands and natural grasslands. Our study demonstrated the potential of the phenology-based approach, all the available Landsat images, and GEE for tracing the historical dynamics of green fodder at 30-m resolution in alpine regions. Our findings advance our understanding of changes in forage area, production, the supply–demand gap, and the ecological and climatic consequences of green fodder expansion.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Yang, Tong0000-0002-3442-400X
Zhang, Geli0000-0002-0386-5646
Di, Yuanyuan0000-0002-9739-1882
Liu, Ruoqi0000-0003-1704-1151
Zhang, Qiang0000-0001-8389-4713
Doughty, Russell B.0000-0001-5191-2155
Additional Information:© 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Under a Creative Commons license - Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) Received 4 March 2021, Revised 4 June 2021, Accepted 8 June 2021, Available online 17 June 2021. This work was supported by the Second Tibetan Plateau of Scientific Expedition and Research Program (2019QZKK0608), the Key Research Program of Frontier Sciences, the Chinese Academy of Sciences (QYZDB-SSW-DQC005), and the 2115 Talent Development Program of China Agricultural University. We thank Prof. Jinwei Dong for his valuable comments in the earlier versions of the manuscript. CRediT authorship contribution statement Tong Yang: Conceptualization, Methodology, Writing - Original Draft, Software, Data Curation, Visualization. Geli Zhang: Conceptualization, Writing - review & editing, Supervision, Funding acquisition. Yuzhe Li: Investigation, Writing - Review & Editing. Jiangwen Fan: Conceptualization, Writing - Review & Editing. Danfeng Sun: Writing - Review & Editing. Jie Wang: Writing - Review & Editing. Yuanyuan Di: Investigation, Writing - Review & Editing. Nanshan You: Software, Data curation, Writing - Review & Editing. Ruoqi Liu: Writing - Review & Editing. Qiang Zhang: Writing - Review & Editing. Russell B. Doughty: Writing - Review & Editing. The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Second Tibetan Plateau of Scientific Expedition and Research Program2019QZKK0608
Chinese Academy of SciencesQYZDB-SSW-DQC005
China Agricultural UniversityUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Green fodder mapping; Pixel- and phenology-based approach; Google Earth Engine (GEE); Landsat; Northeastern Tibetan Plateau; Rapid expansion
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210628-191053399
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Tong Yang, Geli Zhang, Yuzhe Li, Jiangwen Fan, Danfeng Sun, Jie Wang, Yuanyuan Di, Nanshan You, Ruoqi Liu, Qiang Zhang, Russell B. Doughty, Satellite observed rapid green fodder expansion in northeastern Tibetan Plateau from 2010 to 2019, International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation, Volume 102, 2021, 102394, ISSN 0303-2434,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:109626
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:29 Jun 2021 14:28
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 19:37

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