CONJOINT SEASONAL AND INTRASEASONAL DYNAMICS OF PRECIPITATION AND NDVI OVER THE AMAZON AND THE CONGO RAINFORESTS
Abstract:We study the conjoint seasonal and intraseasonal variability of precipitation and NDVI over the Amazon and the Congo rainforests, using pentad precipitation from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM; 0.25°x0.25°; from 1998 to 2010), as well as from the CPC Merged Analysis of Precipitation (CMAP; 2.5°x2.5°; from 1979 to 2011). NDVI is obtained from NASA (DAAC-EOSDIS) (0.25°x0.25°, from 2000 to 2010). Results for Amazonia show a uni-modal out-phased seasonal cycle of precipitation and NDVI, whereas bi-modal and in-phase over the Congo (Figure 1). Dry months over Amazonia (August-September) correspond with lagged maximum NDVI values in June-July-August (Western-Central-Eastern) and with the second wet season over the Congo, whereas wet-season months over Amazonia (March-April) coincide with the lowest NDVI values, as well as with the first wet season and maximum NDVI over the Congo.
A (tropical) transatlantic Empirical Orthogonal Functions (EOF) analysis of pentad precipitation (20-100 day filtered) indicates that EOF No. 1 (52% of variance; Fig. 2a) exhibits a meridional dipole with higher positive loadings over the tropical North Atlantic (5°N-10°N), and higher negative loadings from 5°N to the equator over the Atlantic, and to 15°S over the continents. The Principal Component No. 1 exhibits a predominant 37-day frequency. EOF No. 2 (18% of variance; Fig.2b) exhibits a tripole pattern with positive loadings over southern Amazonia, the tropical North Atlantic, and (south) equatorial Africa, and a transatlantic pattern of negative loadings from 0 to 5°N including both continents, with a 38-day periodicity. EOF No. 3 (8% of variance; Fig. 2c) exhibits a tripole between the Amazon, the Atlantic Ocean and the Congo, with a 19-day frequency. EOF No. 4 (5%; Fig. 2d) shows a dipole between the Amazon and Congo rainforests, with a predominant period of 20 days. The apparent west-to-east patterns identified in the principal EOFs could be associated with the predominant movement of the intraseasonal Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) and Kelvin waves, whereas EOFs No. 3 and 4 denote modes associated to sub-monthly variability.