Tuesday December 6, 2016 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM EST
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NASA Land-Cover and Land-Use Change (LCLUC) Program 
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NASA LCLUC Fall 2016 Webinar Series:

Mapping Industrial Forests

Tuesday December 6, 2016

2:00 PM (EST), 1:00PM (CST), 11:00 AM (PST)


The NASA Land Cover and Land Use Change (LCLUC) Program would like to invite you to the Fall 2016  Live Webinar Series. The 2016 LCLUC Webinar Series features LCLUC projects focusing on detection and monitoring of land-cover and land-use changes. These projects contribute to the revised science questions identified in the Land Use Land Cover Change theme of the 2003 U.S. Climate Change Science Program Strategic Plan: "What observations and methods are needed to quantitatively characterize historic and current land-use and land-cover dynamics that influence the sustainability of human societies and the environment?" and "What are the primary drivers and processes of land-use and land-cover change and how do they interact?".  

The past webinars focussed on urban and agricultural studies. The Fall 2016 webinar series focuses on Industrial Forests. This is the last webinar in the Fall series and focuses specifically on Mapping Industrial Forests.

Monitoring and Mapping the Area, Extent and Shifting Geographies of Industrial Forests in the Tropics


David Skole 

Michigan State University

Speaker Bio

Tropical forest conversion is a major driver of climate change, and contributes as much as 25% of global carbon dioxide emissions. The main agent of deforestation and degradation over the last twenty years has been the conversion of closed canopy tropical forests to agriculture. Logging and forest management have not been as important as outright clearing of forests for agriculture, even while some early reports have painted a dire picture of a looming threat from commercial logging in the Amazon and some other areas. These threats have not turned out to as quantitatively significant as once feared and seem isolated to key hot spots but not widespread.  Further, the reported strong link between logging, understory fire, and forest conversion does not appear to hold true except in some key local hot spots. However, it is the premise of this project that the issue is far from being resolved. First, the vast majority of research has been focused on selective logging and degradation in intact natural forests, usually considered as a form of one-off harvest or culling rather than a form of intensive forest management. This is a very different phenomenon than the establishment of industrial forests (IF) in natural forestland as well as on non-forest land, which are associated with the dynamics of management and rotation. Second, the studies done to-date are geographically limited and thus may represent special cases not reflective of a general or widespread LCLUC phenomenon. As such we need to have a much better understanding of the extent and dynamics of industrial forestry and commercial forest logging – empirically and from the perspective of understanding drivers.

Preliminary evidence suggests that here are large and increasing investments being made in land resource development by all types of investors, from smallholders to industry. More precisely, these megatrends are forcing large scale shifts in land use and land cover; for instance natural forests and food-based agriculture systems are being converted to industrial tree systems (plantations). Early observations suggest that the area of industrial forest land use is increasing globally. More interesting, there appears to be significant geographic shifts in the location of new industrial tree systems, as industrial wood production that has historically been located in the temperate zone is now moving to tropical production centers and source regions.

Mapping Industrial Forest Plantations in Tropical Monsoon Asia Through Integration of Landsat and PALSAR Imagery


Yuanwei Qin

University of Oklahoma

 Speaker Bio  

The areas of industrial forest plantations have expanded substantially in recent years across tropical regions, in particular tropical monsoon Asia. However, the information on the area, spatial distribution and temporal dynamics of industrial forest plantations in tropical monsoon Asia are incomplete and outdated. In this presentation, we present the results from our NASA project that combines optical (Landsat, MODIS) and synthetic aperture radar (PALSAR, Sentinel-1) images to identify and map industrial forest plantation in tropical monsoon Asia. The algorithms will facilitate timely and accurate mapping of industrial forest plantations in the region and the results will expand community knowledge about industrial forest plantations.


Immediately after you submit the registration form, you'll receive an email with a link to connect to the session. During the Webinar, you can receive audio directly through your computer speakers for free. We regret if the timing of this session isn't optimal for you. A recorded version of the session will  be made on available our website.