Jun 7, 2011

Science Scene - Forest Canopy Height

Scientists at the Woods Hole Research Center have produced a high-resolution “National Biomass and Carbon Dataset for the year 2000” (NBCD2000), the first ever spatially explicit inventory of its kind. The dataset was produced as part of a project funded under NASA’s Terrestrial Ecology Program with additional support from the Landscape Fire and Resource Management Planning Tools Project (LANDFIRE). The project has generated a high-resolution (30 m), year-2000 baseline estimate of basal area-weighted canopy height, aboveground live dry biomass, and standing carbon stock for the conterminous United States.
Development of the dataset is based on an empirical modeling approach that combines USDA Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) data with high-resolution InSAR data acquired from the 2000 Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) and optical remote sensing data acquired from the Landsat ETM+ sensor. 
The production of the NBCD Canopy Height and Aboveground Live Dry Biomass Layers comes at a time when understanding and quantifying the carbon balance for North America is more important than ever.  This spatially explicit, high resolution (30 m) dataset of vegetation height, biomass, and carbon stock is the first of its kind and provides a baseline from which to detect future changes. 


  1. A very fascinating link Ken. I particularly like the interactive map.

  2. Amazing, the ability to see the world from our homes!!!


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