Community and Regional Planning Program


Date of this Version



Geo-spatial Information Science, 2014 Vol. 17, No. 3, 170–180


© 2014 Wuhan University


This paper investigated spatiotemporal dynamic pattern of vegetation, climate factor, and their complex relationships from seasonal to inter-annual scale in China during the period 1982–1998 through wavelet transform method based on GIMMS data-sets. First, most vegetation canopies demonstrated obvious seasonality, increasing with latitudinal gradient. Second, obvious dynamic trends were observed in both vegetation and climate change, especially the positive trends. Over 70% areas were observed with obvious vegetation greening up, with vegetation degradation principally in the Pearl River Delta, Yangtze River Delta, and desert. Overall warming trend was observed across the whole country (>98% area), stronger in Northern China. Although over half of area (58.2%) obtained increasing rainfall trend, around a quarter of area (24.5%), especially the Central China and most northern portion of China, exhibited significantly negative rainfall trend. Third, significantly positive normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI)–climate relationship was generally observed on the de-noised time series in most vegetated regions, corresponding to their synchronous stronger seasonal pattern. Finally, at inter-annual level, the NDVI–climate relationship differed with climatic regions and their long-term trends: in humid regions, positive coefficients were observed except in regions with vegetation degradation; in arid, semiarid, and semihumid regions, positive relationships would be examined on the condition that increasing rainfall could compensate the increasing water requirement along with increasing temperature. This study provided valuable insights into the long-term vegetation–climate relationship in China with consideration of their spatiotemporal variability and overall trend in the global change process.