Characterizing and monitoring natural or close-to-natural ecosystems is essential to the sustainability of human-environment systems and to deepen our understanding of indirect global environmental impacts from local to global scales.
- EnMAP data contribute to improved characterization and monitoring of natural ecosystems and ecosystem services through accurate quantification of biophysical parameters and detailed description of heterogeneous landscapes. The following main scientific tasks are related to natural ecosystems: Retrieval of biochemical and biophysical variables as input for ecosystem and species habitat models to improve understanding of ecosystem and ecological processes; Assessment of the state of biodiversity and ecosystems, as well as the services they provide, such as the above-ground carbon sequestration potential
- Monitoring of natural or quasi-natural vegetation areas (such as protected areas, naturalized, un-used or extensively used areas) to understand causes and driving forces of changes
- Retrieval of Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBV) relating to species populations, species traits, community structure, ecosystem structure and ecosystem function
- Quantification of spatial and temporal ecosystem transitions, such as vegetation succession, habitat heterogeneity, plant or animal community transitions, and assessment of potential feedback mechanisms
- Investigation of the effect of climate change and other anthropogenic and non-anthropogenic forces on global vegetation gradients