Landcover change monitoring and validation

Introduction

The GEM unit of JRC is involved in a number of important initiatives to moitor and assess landcover change at the local, regional, national and global scales. Landcover change monitoring is important in many contexts, for example:

As part of this work, JRC has developed a number of tools which help local and national experts around the world to supply information on the geographic areas where they have experience.

Forest Resource Assessment

Web-based validation tools for the TREES-3 tropical forest monitoring exercise

The link below shows an example of Web-based validation for forest inventory. The tools were designed for national experts to use as part of the FRA exercise which records landcover within 20x20km samples at lat-long confluence points covering the whole globe.

The TREES-3 Action provides quantitative measurements and mapping of changes in forest resources for EU policies related to global environmental and forestry issues, with a focus on Eurasian boreal forests and tropical forests, including the Caribbean and Pacific regions. It also addresses forest cover and cover change issues related to EU commitments to Multilateral Environmental Agreements, especially to UN conventions such as the UNFCCC, UNCCD, UNCBD, and the UN Forest Forum, as well as Action Plans such as on Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade (FLEGT).

Landcover change around protected areas

Web-based validation tools for RSPB / Birdlife research

The link below shows an example of Web-based validation for assessing the impact of protection on landcover in and around bird habitats. This tool is designed to be used in a systematic sampling exercise carried out by Birdlife International and RSPB. 100m sample boxes are placed at regular intervals across an Important Bird Area and the 20km buffer zone surrounding it. Landcover change over time is recorded for each sample, and the results are used to identify whether protection has a significant effect on landcover change within parks, and whether development and agriculture are being displaced by protection regimes, increasing the effective fragmentation of the habitats within protected parks.