University of Virginia, Uninversity Park, United States
This pilot GOFC project for the Miombo Dry Tropical Region of Southern Africa is seeking to understand the role of Miombo in the carbon budget, as well as provide baseline land cover information to support ecosystem assessment and natural resources management. The overarching science goal is to quantify carbon in the Miombo system and estimate carbon fluxes due to land use/land cover changes, and explore the question about whether the Miombo region is a source or sink of carbon over a forest management horizon (10 to 20 years, using the 1990- 2000 as an initial test period). Related to this, the project is exploring the feasibility of community-level carbon projects that would satisfy Kyoto forests. This will be accomplished through 1. Mapping the miombo region using Landsat 7 data by working in conjunction with Southern African national mapping agencies 2. Measurement of carbon densities in representative land cover/forest cover types of the region, while building upon existing forest inventory and national biomass studies 3. Development of a carbon accounting model that will quantify carbon pools in the miombo region for 1990 and the year 2000, and the major C fluxes due to land cover changes 4. Development of a regional spatial database for site characterization and 5. Development of an information management system that will distribute satellite data for the miombo region, and serve as a database archive for field data about the miombo region, such as forest inventory records and site data for image classification. The Miombo GOFC project will provide leadership in application of satellite data in the Miombo Network, and expects to engage as many user groups as possible. The acquisition and distribution of satellite data to as many user groups within the Miombo Network is a very important service to the community designed to maximize benefit from remote sensing.