The availability and accessibility of global land and forest cover data sets plays an important role in many global, regional and national change studies. Recent developments in earth observing satellite technology, information technology, computer hardware and software, and infrastructure development have helped in the development of better quality land cover data sets. As a result, such data sets are increasingly becoming available, the user-base is ever widening, application areas have been expanding, and the potential of many other applications are enormous.
|Very Coarse Resolution Products||Mathews Global Vegetation/Land Use||1983||1° x 1°||http://www.giss.nasa.gov/|
|Olson Land Cover and Vegetation||1983||0.5° x 0.5°||http://www.grid.unep.ch/|
|Willson and Henderson–Sellers Global Land Cover||1985||1° x 1°||http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/|
|Coarse Resolution Products||DeFries/Townshend-Global Land Cover||1995||10 km x 10 km||http://glcf.umiacs.umd.edu/|
|GLCC (IGBP DISCover)||1997||1 km x 1 km||http://edcdaac.usgs.gov/|
|UMD Land Cover||2000||1 km x 1 km||http://glcf.umiacs.umd.edu/|
|MODIS Land Cover||2003||1 km x 1 km||http://edcdaac.usgs.gov/|
|Vegetation Continuous Fields||2003||1 km x 1 km||http://glcf.umiacs.umd.edu/|
|GLC-2000||2003||1 km x 1 km||http://www.gvm.sai.jrc.it/|
|MODIS vegetation continuous fields (VCF)||2011||250 m x 250 m||http://glcf.umiacs.umd.edu/|
|GLOBCOVER||2009||300 m x 300 m||http://www.esa.int/|
|MODIS Land Cover||2008||500 m x 500 m||http://edcdaac.usgs.gov/|
|Medium Resolution Products||JAXA global PALSAR mosaic and forest/non-forest map (2007-2010)||2013||25 m x 25 m||JAXA EORC|
|GeoCover LCTM||2003||30 m x 30 m||http://www.earthsat.com/|
|China Global Land Cover||2012||30 m x 30 m||http://www.globallandcover.com/|
|Global Forest Watch||2013||30 m x 30 m||http://www.globalforestwatch.org/|
|GEO US Global Land Cover||2013||30 m x 30 m||http://landcover.usgs.gov/|
How much is the South Asian region benefiting?
I think we can benefit at the regional and/or at the national level. In the South Asian region, as we are well aware, lack of data and information has been one of the major limitations on policy and decision makers in addressing regional environmental issues. These issues include the development of greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories, the evolution of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) mechanisms, and the assessment of land degradation, as well as optimal land use planning.
How accurate are these products?
At different platforms debates and collaborations are going on to make global products more accurate and acceptable. Global scale study can’t come up to the demands of the national level scale. But based on our interest (land and/or forest cover change), we can get hold of the above-mentioned products, and after a certain levels of personal validation, these can be used and further analysed, instead of starting from scratch.Conflicts of Interest: The findings reported stand as scientific study and observations of the author and do not necessarily reflect as the views of author’s organizations. About this post: This is a guest post by Hammad Gilani. Learn more about this blog’s authors here.