Vegetation optical depth (VOD) and effective vegetation optical depth (EVOD) are key factors for estimating soil moisture and vegetation parameters. Microwave vegetation indices (MVIs, including A and B parameters) have been recently developed for short-vegetation covered surfaces. The MVIs parameter B (MVIs_B) is mainly related to vegetation conditions, which makes it provide a potential way of EVOD retrieval. A theoretical expression deriving EVOD was deduced using MVIs_B from WindSat data. Global patterns of EVOD were analyzed subsequently. It has been shown that EVOD retrieved from MVIs performed a consistent global pattern and seasonal variation with normalized difference vegetation index. Time-series data from the Central Tibetan Plateau Soil Moisture/Temperature Monitoring Network, which is grassland dominated, was selected for temporal analysis. It was found that the temporal EVOD from WindSat MVIs can capture the growth trend of vegetation. Comparisons between EVOD estimations from MVIs and a radiative transfer model were also performed over this network. It was found that EVOD from the two methods exhibited comparable values and similar trends. MVIs_B-derived EVOD can be obtained without any other auxiliary data and has great potential in land-surface parameter retrieval over short-vegetation covered areas.