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Data for: Saturation response of enhanced vegetation productivity attributes to intricate interactions

Cite this dataset

Lian, Xihong; Jiao, Limin; Liu, Zejin (2022). Data for: Saturation response of enhanced vegetation productivity attributes to intricate interactions [Dataset]. Dryad.


Evidence for the multifaceted responses of terrestrial ecosystems has been shown by the weakening of CO2 fertilization-induced and warming-controlled productivity gains. The intricate relationship between vegetation productivity and various environmental controls still remains elusive spatially. Her,e several inherent preponderances make China a natural experimental setting to investigate the interaction and relative contributions of five drivers to gross primary productivity for the period from 1982 to 2018 (i.e., elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations, climate change, nutrient availability, anthropogenic land use change, and soil moisture) by coupling multiple long-term datasets. Despite a strikingly prominent enhancement of vegetation productivity in China, it exhibits similar saturation responses to the aforementioned environmental drivers (elevated CO2, climatic factors, and soil moisture). The CO2 fertilization-dominated network explains the long-term variations in vegetation productivity in humid regions, but its effect is clearly attenuated or even absent in arid and alpine environments controlled by climate and soil moisture. Divergence in interactions also provides distinct evidence that water availability plays an essential role in limiting the potential effects of climate change and elevated CO2 concentrations on vegetation productivity. Unprecedented industrialization and dramatic surface changes may have breached critical thresholds of terrestrial ecosystems under the diverse natural environment and thus forced a shift from a period dominated by CO2 fertilization to a period with non-linear interactions. These findings suggest that future benefits in terrestrial ecosystems are likely to be counteracted by uncertainties in the complicated network, implying an increasing reliance on human societies to combat potential risks. Our results therefore highlight the need to account for the intricate interactions globally and thus incorporate them into mitigation and adaptation policies.


The methods used to collect and process the data are described in Lian et al. 2022. Saturation response of enhanced vegetation productivity attributes to intricate interactions. Global Change Biology, accepted. 

Usage notes

All files are in .csv and .xlsx format.


National Natural Science Foundation of China

Ministry of Science and Technology of the People's Republic of China