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A large-scale project initiated in the early 1990s, the TREES (TRopical Ecosystem Environment observations by Satellite) project, is dedicated to the development of techniques for global tropical forest inventory and for monitoring deforestation using satellite imagery. The second phase of the TREES project (1996-2000) was funded by the Directorate General for Environment of the European Commission. The project has developed a reliable method for global forest change assessment in the humid tropics and has applied this throughout the world. Twenty-seven local partners from tropical countries contributed to TREES.

The approach is based on a statistical sampling of observation units with a higher sampling rate for fast changing areas. A pre-stratification was performed using two parameters: the forest cover area (from the 1 km resolution maps produced in the first phase of the project) and areas where changes are expected to be higher based on individual expertise: the 'Hot Spot Report' (Achard et al., 1998). Forest cover change during the period 1992-1997 was estimated from the one hundred sample sites using fine spatial resolution satellite imagery. .

Additional information

Authors: ACHARD F ET AL, European Commission, Joint Research Centre, Institute for Environment and Sustainability, Ispra (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: An article published in: LUCC Newsletter, Number 6, May 2001, pp.27-28. (LUCC = Land Use and Land Cover Change).
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