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Keywords:

  • hydrology;
  • interception;
  • global

[1] A new methodology for estimating forest rainfall interception from multisatellite observations is presented. The Climate Prediction Center morphing technique (CMORPH) precipitation product is used as driving data and is applied to Gash's analytical model to derive daily interception rates at global scale. Results compare well with field observations of rainfall interception (R = 0.86, n = 42). Global estimates are presented and spatial differences in the distribution of interception over different ecosystems analyzed. According to our findings, interception loss is responsible for the evaporation of approximately 13% of the total incoming rainfall over broadleaf evergreen forests, 19% in broadleaf deciduous forests, and 22% in needleleaf forests. The product is sensitive to the volume of rainfall, rain intensity, and forest cover. In combination with separate estimates of transpiration it offers the potential to study the impact of climate change and deforestation on the dynamics of the global hydrological cycle.