The mapping of impervious surface area (ISA) and urban green space (UGS) is essential for improving the urban environmental quality toward ecological, livable, and sustainable goals. Currently, accurate ISA and UGS products are lacking in urban areas at the global scale. This study established regression models that estimated the fraction of ISA/UGS in global 30 cities for validation using MODIS NDVI and DMSP/OLS nighttime light imageries. A global dataset of ISA and UGS fraction with a spatial resolution of 250 m×250 m was developed using the regression model, with a mean relative error of 0.19 for its ISA. The results showed the global urban area of 76.29×104 km2, which was primarily distributed in central Europe, eastern Asia, and central and eastern North America. The urban land area in North America, Europe, and Asia was 66.3×104 km2, accounting for 86.91% of the world’s urban area; the urban land area of the top 50 countries accounted for 59.32% of the total urban land area in the world. The global ISA of 45.26×104 km2 was mainly distributed in central and southern North America, eastern Asia, and Europe, as well as coastal regions around the world. The proportion of ISA situated in built-up areas on the continental scale followed the order of Africa (>70%)>South America>Oceania>Asia (>60%)>North America>Europe (>50%), and these areas were mostly in southeastern North America, southwestern Europe, and eastern and western Asia. North America, Europe, and Asia accounted for 89.44% of the world’s total UGS. The cities of developed countries in Europe and North America exposed a dramatic mosaic of ISA and UGS composites in urban construction. Therefore, the proportion of UGS is relatively high in those cities. However, in developing and underdeveloped countries, the proportion of UGS in built-up areas is relatively low, and urban environments need to be improved for livability.
Science China Earth Sciences