The Convention on the Protection of the Alps has concluded that the Alpine environment is under imminent threat, and demands comprehensive counter-measures.
While the Alps represent one of the most sensitive ecosystems in Europe the pressure on them is far greater than on other environments. Far-sighted national and cross border planning is necessary to ensure that preventive measures can be implemented by nature conservation councils, regional planning departments, tourist boards and forestry and agricultural authorities. The success of such measures crucially depends on the availability of information about the kind of Alpine vegetation patterns found and their development dynamics.
ALPMON envisages that, by means of the analysis of TM and SPOT sensors a basic landscape register for Alpine areas will be compiled, which will serve as the basis for planning tasks. The components of the Alpine monitoring system will, firstly, be derived from the results of a classification of satellite images and, secondly, be extrapolated from thematic maps. The information levels of the different test sites will be harmonised.
To realise the aims of ALPMON the following tasks are carried out:
Remote sensing tasks
Primary information on the nature and state of vegetation and of residential areas will be compiled solely by means of remote sensing. Accordingly, remote sensing data plays a key role in the construction of small-scale base information systems. An important objective, therefore, is the testing of operational and semi-operational processing methods which permit the compilation of the specified parameters with maximum precision.
The topographical, hydrological and geological parameters which, firstly, are integrated as auxiliary information in the processing of satellite images and, secondly, provide the basis for applications, will be extracted from information contained in existing maps. Different GIS analysis techniques will be performed in order to integrate and network the various types of information sources (remote sensing, thematic maps, digital altitude models, meteorological information).
In order to demonstrate the feasibility of the Alpine monitoring system, specific applications will be performed in close cooperation with national customers in the following fields:
Hydrological modelling of water run off Production of avalanche and landslide risk maps Development of a remote sensing aided environmental quality assessment for tourism
A further result are a concept for the establishment of a remote sensing ba alpine information introduced to the Alpine convention (Customer on the Europe Level). In order to meet the requirements and needs of the Alpine Convention and the international national authorities an intensive execution of the customers needs is carried out.