Nov 15, 2018

The sensitivity of snow ephemerality to warming climate across an arid to montane vegetation gradient

by
Rose S. Petersky, Kevin T. Shoemaker, Peter J. Weisberg, Adrian A. Harpold
,
Ecohydrology
  • States that shifts from longer seasonal snowpacks to shorter, ephemeral snowpacks (snowpacks that persist for <60 days) due to climate change will alter the timing and rates of water availability
  • Analyzes moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) snow‐covered products from water years 2001–2015 using an object‐based mapping approach and a random forest model to identify the climatic controls on snow ephemerality
  • Finds that:
    • Winter temperature and precipitation were the most influential variables on the maximum snow duration
    • The combination of warming and interannual precipitation variability (i.e., reductions of 25%) had different effects on vegetation types