IGN 14-4 - Scaling up: Limitations and potential for using remote sensing in understanding forest change

Wednesday, August 9, 2017
C124, Oregon Convention Center


Meghna Agarwala, Columbia University

Remote sensing is used to understand forest change through understanding processes such as deforestation, changes in forest structure, biomass, composition, and invasive species. We applied the best available technology and methods to understand forest change in the central Indian landscape and found limitations to using remote sensing in the area. These include: availability of sensors; errors associated with predicting continuous variables such as biomass; loss of information when errors were masked; scale mismatch with remote-sensing derived predictors; and temporal limitations to tracking change. Such limitations may be generalizable across multi-species, heterogeneous, open canopy forests in several regions of the world.