Scott J Goetz

Scott J Goetz
Northern Arizona University | NAU · SICCS - GEODE Lab

PhD

About

371
Publications
158,849
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
34,270
Citations
Introduction
My research is centered around ecosystem responses to environmental change, including monitoring and modeling the interactions between forests, biodiversity, climate, land use change and disturbance. Thompson Reuters has recognized this work in the top 1% by citations with “outsized influence across several fields during the last decade, demonstrating superior multidisciplinary or interdisciplinary impact."
Additional affiliations
August 2013 - October 2016
Woodwell Climate Research Center
Position
  • Deputy Director
Description
  • The WCRC investigates the consequences of climate change around the world to identify opportunities for conservation, restoration and sustainable development. Formerly the Woods Hole Research Center (WHRC) it was trice ranked the top climate change "think tank" in the world by the International Center for Climate Governance (ICCG).

Publications

Publications (371)
Article
Full-text available
Forest monitoring using satellite imagery has advanced tremendously over the past few decades, to the point that these datasets now inform international policy agreements, notably those associated with emissions of CO2 into the atmosphere from deforestation and other types of land-use change. However, satellite technological advances require time t...
Article
Full-text available
A key issue in global conservation is how biodiversity co-benefits can be incorporated into land use and climate change mitigation activities, particularly those being negotiated under the United Nations to reduce emissions from tropical deforestation and forest degradation. Protected areas have been the dominant strategy for tropical forest conser...
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents an overview of the state of measurement and monitoring capabilities for forests in the context of REDD+ needs, with a focus on what is currently possible, where improvements are needed, and what capabilities will be advanced in the near-term with new technologies already under development. We summarize the role of remote sensing...
Article
Full-text available
Over 140 Mha of restoration commitments have been pledged across the global tropics, yet guidance is needed to identify those landscapes where implementation is likely to provide the greatest potential benefits and cost-effective outcomes. By overlaying seven recent, peer-reviewed spatial datasets as proxies for socioenviron-mental benefits and fea...
Article
Full-text available
Roads facilitate development in remote forest regions, often with detrimental consequences for ecosystems. In the Congo Basin, unpaved logging roads used by timber firms, as well as paved and unpaved public roads, have expanded greatly. Comparing old (before 2003) and new (2003–2018) road datasets derived from Landsat imagery, we show that the tota...
Article
Full-text available
Accurate estimation of aboveground forest biomass stocks is required to assess the impacts of land use changes such as deforestation and subsequent regrowth on concentrations of atmospheric CO2. The Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) is a lidar mission launched by NASA to the International Space Station in 2018. GEDI was specifically de...
Article
Here we response to a Letter to the Editor by Timoney (2022) and maintain our conclusion that “there have been systematic trends in vegetation greenness during recent decades that are consistent with an emerging boreal biome shift associated with ongoing climate warming.”
Article
Full-text available
Interest in ecoacoustics has resulted in an influx of acoustic data and novel methodologies to classify and relate landscape sound activity to biodiversity and ecosystem health. However, indicators used to summarize sound and quantify the effects of disturbances on biodiversity can be inconsistent when applied across ecological gradients. This stud...
Article
Full-text available
Widespread changes in the distribution and abundance of plant functional types (PFTs) are occurring in Arctic and boreal ecosystems due to the intensification of disturbances, such as fire, and climate-driven vegetation dynamics, such as tundra shrub expansion. To understand how these changes affect boreal and tundra ecosystems, we need to first qu...
Preprint
Accurate estimation of aboveground forest biomass stocks is required to assess the impacts of land use changes such as deforestation and subsequent regrowth on concentrations of atmospheric CO2. The Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) is a lidar mission launched by NASA to the International Space Station in 2018. GEDI was specifically de...
Article
Full-text available
NASAs Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) is collecting space-borne full waveform lidar data with a primary science goal of producing accurate estimates of forest aboveground biomass density (AGBD). This paper presents the development of the models used to create GEDIs footprint-level (~25 m) AGBD (GEDI04_A) product, including a descript...
Article
Full-text available
The boreal forest biome is a major component of Earth's biosphere and climate system that is projected to shift northward due to continued climate change over the coming century. Indicators of a biome shift will likely first be evident along the climatic margins of the boreal forest and include changes in vegetation productivity, mortality, and rec...
Article
Full-text available
Forest characteristics, structure, and dynamics within the North American boreal region are heavily influenced by wildfire intensity, severity, and frequency. Increasing temperatures are likely to result in drier conditions and longer fire seasons, potentially leading to more intense and frequent fires. However, an increase in deciduous forest cove...
Article
is collecting spaceborne full waveform lidar data with a primary science goal of producing accurate estimates of forest aboveground biomass density (AGBD). This paper presents the development of the models used to create GEDI's footprint-level (~25 m) AGBD (GEDI04_A) product, including a description of the datasets used and the procedure for final...
Preprint
Full-text available
Deciduous tree cover is expected to increase in North American boreal forests with climate warming and wildfire occurrence. This shift in composition can generate biophysical cooling effects via increased land surface albedo. Here we use newly derived maps of continuous tree canopy and fractional deciduous cover to assess change over recent decades...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Empirical biodiversity – forest structure relationships (BSRs) underlie the use of forest structure as a remotely sensible proxy of biodiversity. However, little is known about how BSRs generalize to continental scales or how climate interacts with structure to drive local patterns in plant diversity. Resolving these research gaps in macrosyste...
Article
Full-text available
The Arctic is one chapter from the State of the Climate in 2020 annual report and is available from https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-21-0086.1. Compiled by NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, State of the Climate in 2020 is based on contributions from scientists from around the world. It provides a detailed update on global climate...
Article
Full-text available
Soil respiration (i.e. from soils and roots) provides one of the largest global fluxes of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere and is likely to increase with warming, yet the magnitude of soil respiration from rapidly thawing Arctic-boreal regions is not well understood. To address this knowledge gap, we first compiled a new CO2 flux database for...
Article
Arctic vegetation communities are rapidly changing with climate warming, which impacts wildlife, carbon cycling and climate feedbacks. Accurately monitoring vegetation change is thus crucial, but scale mismatches between field and satellite-based monitoring cause challenges. Remote sensing from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) has emerged as a bridg...
Article
Full-text available
Signatory countries to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) are formulating goals and indicators through 2050 under the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF). Among the goals is increasing the integrity of ecosystems. The CBD is now seeking input toward a quantifiable definition of integrity and methods to track it globally. Here, w...
Article
Full-text available
Climate change-driven droughts and insect outbreaks are becoming more frequent and widespread, increasing forest vulnerability to mortality. By addressing the impacts of climate and insects on tree growth preceding death, we can better understand tree mortality risk under a changing climate. Here, we used tree stature and interannual growth (basal...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding spatial patterns of diversity in tropical forests is indispensable for their sustainable use and conservation. Recent studies have reported relationships between forest structure and α-diversity. While tree α-diversity is difficult to map via remote sensing, large-scale forest structure models are becoming more common, which would fac...
Article
Full-text available
Vegetation composition shifts, and in particular, shrub expansion across the Arctic tundra are some of the most important and widely observed responses of high-latitude ecosystems to rapid climate warming. These changes in vegetation potentially alter ecosystem carbon balances by affecting a complex set of soil–plant–atmosphere interactions. In thi...
Article
Full-text available
As the Arctic warms, tundra wildfires are expected to become more frequent and severe. Assessing how the most flammable regions of the tundra respond to burning can inform us about how the rest of the Arctic may be affected by climate change. Here we describe ecosystem responses to tundra fires in the Noatak River watershed of northwestern Alaska u...
Article
Full-text available
Seasonal snow cover in the dry forests of the American West provides essential water resources to both human and natural systems. The structure of trees and their arrangement across the landscape are important drivers of snow cover distribution across these forests, varying widely in both space and time. We used unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) multis...
Preprint
Full-text available
Signatory countries to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) are formulating indicators through 2030 under the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF). These goals include increasing the integrity of natural ecosystems. However, the definition of integrity and methods for measuring it remain unspecified. Moreover, nations did not achie...
Preprint
Full-text available
Reducing deforestation underpins efforts to conserve global biodiversity. However, this focus on retaining forest cover overlooks the multitude of anthropogenic pressures that can degrade forest quality in ways that may imperil biodiversity. Here we use the latest remotely-sensed measures of forest structural condition and associated human pressure...
Article
Full-text available
A Correction to this paper has been published: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-20999-7.
Book
Full-text available
the full text can be found at: https://lpvs.gsfc.nasa.gov/PDF/CEOS_WGCV_LPV_Biomass_Protocol_2021_V1.0.pdf
Article
Full-text available
Many global environmental agendas, including halting biodiversity loss, reversing land degradation, and limiting climate change, depend upon retaining forests with high ecological integrity, yet the scale and degree of forest modification remain poorly quantified and mapped. By integrating data on observed and inferred human pressures and an index...
Article
Full-text available
Carbon (C) emissions from wildfires are a key terrestrial–atmosphere interaction that influences global atmospheric composition and climate. Positive feedbacks between climate warming and boreal wildfires are predicted based on top-down controls of fire weather and climate, but C emissions from boreal fires may also depend on bottom-up controls of...
Article
Full-text available
Tropical forests vary in composition, structure and function such that not all forests have similar ecological value. This variability is caused by natural and anthropogenic disturbance regimes, which influence the ability of forests to support biodiversity, store carbon, mediate water yield and facilitate human well-being. While international envi...
Article
Full-text available
Warming in recent decades has triggered shrub expansion in Arctic and alpine tundra, which is transforming these temperature-limited ecosystems and altering carbon and nutrient cycles, fire regimes, permafrost stability, land-surface climate-feedbacks, and wildlife habitat. Where and when Arctic shrub expansion happens in the future will depend in...
Article
Full-text available
Arctic warming can influence tundra ecosystem function with consequences for climate feedbacks, wildlife and human communities. Yet ecological change across the Arctic tundra biome remains poorly quantified due to field measurement limitations and reliance on coarse-resolution satellite data. Here, we assess decadal changes in Arctic tundra greenne...
Article
Humans have influenced the terrestrial biosphere for millennia, converting much of Earth’s surface to anthropogenic land uses. Nevertheless, there are still some ecosystems that remain free from significant direct human pressure (and as such, considered ‘‘intact’’), thereby providing crucial habitats for imperilled species and maintaining the ecosy...
Article
Full-text available
The Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) lidar began data acquisition from the International Space Station in March 2019 and is expected to make over 10 billion measurements of canopy structure and topography over two years. Previously, airborne lidar data with limited spatial coverage have been used to examine relationships between fores...
Article
Full-text available
The long-term satellite record (1982-2018) indicates "greening" across most Arctic tundra regions, especially Alaska's North Slope, mainland Canada, and the Russian Far East, but trends are not homogeneous, and some regions instead exhibit no trend or "browning," such as the Canadian Archipelago, southwestern Alaska, and parts of northwestern Siber...
Article
Risks to mitigation potential of forests Much recent attention has focused on the potential of trees and forests to mitigate ongoing climate change by acting as sinks for carbon. Anderegg et al. review the growing evidence that forests' climate mitigation potential is increasingly at risk from a range of adversities that limit forest growth and hea...
Article
Full-text available
Obtaining accurate and widespread measurements of the vertical structure of the Earth’s forests has been a long-sought goal for the ecological community. Such observations are critical for accurately assessing the existing biomass of forests, and how changes in this biomass caused by human activities or variations in climate may impact atmospheric...
Preprint
Our ability to map humanity's influence across Earth has evolved, thanks to powerful computing, a network of earth observing satellites, and new bottom-up census and crowd-sourced data. Here, we provide the latest temporally inter-comparable maps of the terrestrial Human Footprint, and assessment of change in human pressure at global, biome, and ec...
Article
Full-text available
Previous research indicates that the effects of climate warming, including shrub expansion and increased fire frequency may lead to declining lichen abundance in arctic tundra and northern alpine areas. Lichens are important forage for caribou (Rangifer tarandus), whose populations are declining throughout most of North America. To clarify how lich...
Article
Full-text available
It is clear that reducing greenhouse gas emissions alone is insufficient to avoid large global temperature increases. To avoid atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases that result in dangerous alterations of the climate, large reductions in carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel combustion and land use changes must be accompanied by an inc...
Article
Full-text available
The majority of variation in six traits critical to the growth, survival and reproduction of plant species is thought to be organised along just two dimensions, corresponding to strategies of plant size and resource acquisition. However, it is unknown whether global plant trait relationships extend to climatic extremes, and if these interspecific r...
Preprint
Full-text available
Many global environmental agendas, including halting biodiversity loss, reversing land degradation, and limiting climate change, depend upon retaining forests with high ecological integrity, yet the scale and degree of forest modification remains poorly quantified and mapped. By integrating data on direct and indirect forest pressures and lost fore...
Article
Full-text available
Fire is a complex Earth system phenomenon that fundamentally affects vegetation distributions, biogeochemical cycling, climate, and human society across most of Earth's land surface. Fire regimes are currently changing due to multiple interacting global change drivers, most notably climate change, land use, and direct human influences via ignition...
Article
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 greenin...
Book
Full-text available
The Arctic marine ecosystem and the communities that depend upon it continue to experience unprecedented changes as a result of warming air temperatures, declining sea ice, and warming waters. Arctic Report Card 2019 draws particular attention to the Bering Sea region, where declining winter sea ice exemplifies the potential for sudden and extreme...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Restoring forest ecosystems has become an increasingly high priority for land managers across the American West. Millions of hectares of forest are in need of drastic yet strategic reductions in density (e.g., basal area). Meeting the restoration and management goals requires quantifying metrics of vertical and horizontal forest structure,...
Article
Full-text available
Developing accurate methods to map vegetation structure in tropical forests is essential to protect their biodiversity and improve their carbon stock estimation. We integrated LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), multispectral and SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) data to improve the prediction and mapping of canopy height (CH) at high spatial resolut...