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Pan-Tropical Forest Mapping and Monitoring with ALOS/PALSAR

Josef Kellndorfer(1), Wayne Walker(1) and Katie Kirsch(1)

(1) The Woods Hole Research Center, 149 Woods Hole Road, Falmouth, MA 02540, United States

Abstract

K&C Special Session Submission

Negotiations under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to include compensation mechanisms for tropical nations by "Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD)" are to be concluded at the Conference of the Parties in Copenhagen in December 2010. Crucial for a successful agreement on including REDD in the Post-Kyoto commitment period from 2013 to 2017 is the availability of a credible forest monitoring system which is accepted by carbon trading partners. Remote sensing naturally will play a key role in such an accounting system as one of the most objective methods to measure forest change. With its strategic observation plan, data collections of ALOS/PALSAR SAR data emerge as an invaluable asset for boosting remote sensing capabilities of REDD monitoring. Plans to add forest monitoring as a priority for the JAXA ALOS follow-on mission, as well as plans by other space agencies to deploy radar sensors at L-Band in the next decade will guarantee the establishment of relevant SAR data time-series for forest change mapping. The Woods Hole Research Center in partnership with JAXA, NASA, AADN, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Google.org, and the Packard Foundation is spearheading an effort to generate a 2007 baseline data set of pan-tropical dual-polarimetric data acquired by PALSAR and derive provide a first-order estimate of forest/non-forest classification. First results of this effort will be presented in this paper.

 

Symposium presentation

 

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