Estimating regional forest cover in East Texas using Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM+) data

Ramesh Sivanpillai, Charles T. Smith, R. Srinivasan, Michael Gerard Messina, X. Ben Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The USDA Forest Service, through its Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program, periodically estimates forest/non-forest area at the county level using aerial photographs. Satellite-based remotely sensed data and digital image processing techniques could substantially reduce the time required to generate this information. Satellites collect data on a repeat basis and with higher frequency than the aerial photos that are currently used for this purpose. In addition to the forest cover estimates, the USDA could use satellite data to generate maps depicting the spatial distribution of forest cover. However, few studies have tested the utility of medium-resolution satellite data for FIA purposes. We tested the potential for using LANDSAT satellite data to obtain forest cover estimates for a six-county region in East Texas. Satellite data were processed using a combination of image classification techniques that could be repeated in other regions of the USA. Results were compared with the results of traditional photo-based estimation techniques and were comparable within a 95% confidence interval. Based on this study we recommend that medium-resolution satellite data can be used for obtaining county-level forest cover estimates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)342-352
Number of pages11
JournalForest Ecology and Management
Volume218
Issue number1-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 24 2005

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forest cover
remote sensing
satellite data
forest inventory
aerial photography
USDA Forest Service
digital images
image classification
aerial photograph
USDA
confidence interval
photographs
methodology
spatial distribution
image analysis
county

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Forestry
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

Cite this

Sivanpillai, Ramesh ; Smith, Charles T. ; Srinivasan, R. ; Messina, Michael Gerard ; Wu, X. Ben. / Estimating regional forest cover in East Texas using Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM+) data. In: Forest Ecology and Management. 2005 ; Vol. 218, No. 1-3. pp. 342-352.
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Estimating regional forest cover in East Texas using Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM+) data. / Sivanpillai, Ramesh; Smith, Charles T.; Srinivasan, R.; Messina, Michael Gerard; Wu, X. Ben.

In: Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 218, No. 1-3, 24.10.2005, p. 342-352.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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