Ecosystems and Human Well-Being: Volume 1: Current State and Trends: Appendix A. Color Maps and Figures
This article has been reviewed by the following Topic Editor: Peter Saundry
This is Appendix A of the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment report Ecosystems and Human Well-Being: Volume 1: Current State and Trends
Appendix A: Color Maps and Figures
Figure 13.8 Map of Land Surface Albedo Captured by the MODIS Satellite Instrument (Schaaf et al. 2002; Lucht et al. 2000). Albedo is the fraction of solar radiation reflected back into the atmosphere from Earth’s surface. Higher albedo means that more energy leaves the planetary boundary layer (net cooling of the atmosphere). Regions where there were no data available, e.g., due to clouds, are indicated by black. The top figure is of data sampled in January 2001. In the northern areas during the winter season, snow albedo is very high (up to 0.8, red). The boreal forest belt can be clearly seen in blue and green since trees mask snow, reduce albedo, and warm the surface air during the snow season. The bottom figure is of data sampled in June 2001. In comparison with January 2001, the northern land areas have a much lower albedo due to the absence of snow. In this map, the area with the highest albedo (up to 0.5, green and yellow) is the Sahara desert. High albedo in this region suppresses rainfall during the summer rain season.
Figure 20.8 Changes in the Aral Sea, 1960–2001 (UNEP 2002)
Disclaimer: This chapter is taken wholly from, or contains information that was originally written for the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment as published by the World Resources Institute. The content has not been modified by the Encyclopedia of Earth.
Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (Content Source);Peter Saundry (Topic Editor) "Ecosystems and Human Well-Being: Volume 1: Current State and Trends: Appendix A. Color Maps and Figures". In: Encyclopedia of Earth. Eds. Cutler J. Cleveland (Washington, D.C.: Environmental Information Coalition, National Council for Science and the Environment). [First published in the Encyclopedia of Earth September 26, 2011; Last revised Date October 5, 2011; Retrieved June 19, 2013 <http://www.eoearth.org/article/Ecosystems_and_Human_Well-Being:_Volume_1:_Current_State_and_Trends:_Appendix_A._Color_Maps_and_Figures>