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US Forest Service Research & Development
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  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Research Highlights

Individual Highlight

Maps illustrate 23 years of change on Northwest forests

Snapshot : By using historical remote-sensing data, researchers developed maps of annual forest change between 1984 and 2007. These maps, with a resolution of 98 feet (30 meters), of western Oregon, western Washington, and northern California show changes from timber harvests (thinnings to clearcuts), fires (low to high severity), insects and pathogens, and forest increase associated with recovery after disturbance. As a series, the maps contain an unprecedented level of spatial and temporal detail. The ability to illustrate forest change over time was made possible by publicly available satellite data and new algorithms developed by the station and its partners.

Principal Investigators(s) :
Warren Cohen 
Research Location : western Oregon, western Washington, and northern California
Research Station : Pacific Northwest Research Station (PNW)
Year : 2010
Highlight ID : 228

Summary

By using historical remote-sensing data, researchers developed maps of annual forest change between 1984 and 2007. These maps, with a resolution of 98 feet (30 meters), of western Oregon, western Washington, and northern California show changes from timber harvests (thinnings to clearcuts), fires (low to high severity), insects and pathogens, and forest increase associated with recovery after disturbance. As a series, the maps contain an unprecedented level of spatial and temporal detail. The ability to illustrate forest change over time was made possible by publicly available satellite data and new algorithms developed by the station and its partners.

Land managers and regulatory agencies are using these maps to assess current land management, the status and trends of populations of threatened and endangered species, and develop innovative approaches. For example, the Northwest Forest Plan Effectiveness Monitoring Program is using them to assess the effects of forest management and natural disturbance on wildlife habitat for the spotted owl, marbled murrelet, and other old-growth-related species; watershed condition; and socioeconomic factors of forest-product-dependent communities. The National Marine Fisheries Service is using these data to assess effects of forest change on the threatened and endangered runs of the coho salmon in Oregon.

Forest Service Partners

External Partners

 
  • Oregon State University

Research Topics

Priority Areas

  • Inventory and Monitoring
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