Principal Investigator (PI): John Townshend, University of Maryland (UMD)
Co-Investigators (Co-PI): Jeffrey Masek, Compton Tucker—NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center; Matthew Hansen, South Dakota State University; Samuel Goward, UMD
Project Manager: Saurabh Channan, UMD

There is long-standing recognition of the need for global forest change detection at Landsat class resolutions. Previously this was not feasible, because of the absence of well registered multi-temporal data sets, variations in sensors, the need for intensive human input during post-processing, variations in spectral responses of forests, the efforts needed to create validation data sets and the computational and storage demands in carrying out the analysis. 

We demonstrate in this proposal that these problems have now been overcome by the availability of the GeoCover and the forthcoming Mid-Decadal Global Land Survey (MDGLS) data sets, our ability to create atmospherically corrected reflectance products, much improved classifiers, collection of automated dense training sets, the availability of ultra-fine resolution datasets and much lower computational costs.

We therefore propose to produce the following Earth Science Data Records (ESDRs) at fine and moderate spatial resolutions and provide the algorithms and services for producing such products:

  • Global fine resolution (< 100 m) surface reflectance ESDR for four epochs centered around 1990, 2000, and 2005
  • Fine resolution (< 100 m) forest cover change (FCC) ESDR between the four epochs
  • Fragmentation products derived from the fine resolution FCC products
  • Global 250-m vegetation continuous field (VCF) based FCC ESDR from 2000 to 2005
  • FCC ESDR products aggregated from the fine resolution and the 250 m FCC products to 250 m, 500 m, 1 km, and 0.05° grids for use by carbon, biogeochemical and hydrological modelers
  • Subsets of the above products for protected areas of the world and their buffer zones.

In addition to providing these products at the native resolutions and the above listed modeling resolutions, we will also provide estimates of forest cover change from 1990 to 2005 at country, biome, continental, and global levels.

Visit the Global Forest Cover Change website

Distributed by NASA's Land Processes Distributed Active Archive Center (LP DAAC)

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