Comment on "Tropical forests are a net carbon source based on aboveground measurements of gain and loss".


Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20740, USA. [Email]


Baccini et al (Reports, 13 October 2017, p. 230) report MODIS-derived pantropical forest carbon change, with spatial patterns of carbon loss that do not correspond to higher-resolution Landsat-derived tree cover loss. The assumption that map results are unbiased and free of commission and omission errors is not supported. The application of passive moderate-resolution optical data to monitor forest carbon change overstates our current capabilities.