Examining the Hansen Global Forest Change (2000 - 2014) dataset within an Australian local government area

Miller, James (2016) Examining the Hansen Global Forest Change (2000 - 2014) dataset within an Australian local government area. [USQ Project]

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Abstract

Human activities have long changed the state of land cover on the surface of the earth. However, since the Industrial Revolution that rate of change has reached such proportions that the very biogeochemical systems that sustain the biosphere of the planet have been impacted. Forests are an essential component in the biogeochemical processes that maintain a balanced geosphere.

This project provides a GIS based spatial analysis of forest cover and forest loss in the region covered by the Sunshine Coast Council. The analysis was performed against various datasets which were relevant to forest cover. The Hansen global forest change dataset was utilized as it provides a time-series analysis of high (30m) spatial resolution Landsat images aimed at capturing the global forest extent and change from the years 2000 to 2014.

The aim was to test the hypothesis that 'Forests are lost when land use is converted to another use' and to reveal which land use changes contribute to forest loss. An analysis over remnant vegetation areas was also performed in an attempt to give an indication of the effectiveness of conservation efforts.

The ArcGIS tabulate area tool was used to analyse the areas of the Hansen dataset against a set of 'zones' defined by the datasets of interest.

The analysis has provided key insights into land use change within the study area. In particular, 95% of forest gain was outside of land use change areas. 21% of land use change areas, with change Nature Conservation removed, experienced forest loss. Only 3% forest loss was experienced in areas with no change, giving strength to the hypothesis outlined above.

The study confirmed that the Hansen dataset is successful at performing land use analysis at the local government scale, though it does not discriminate types of forest loss i.e. plantation to virgin forest. Errors were encountered in the data affecting the ability to successfully quantify the effectiveness of vegetation management strategies in the study area.


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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Spatial Science (Honours) Major Geographic Information Systems project
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
Supervisors: Apan, Armando
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2017 01:47
Last Modified: 21 Jul 2017 01:47
Uncontrolled Keywords: Hansen Global Forest Change; land use change; GIS; ArcMap; spatial analysis; zonal tools
Fields of Research : 09 Engineering > 0907 Environmental Engineering > 090799 Environmental Engineering not elsewhere classified
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/31446

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