Mapping Protection Forests in the Province of Salzburg Using Remote Sensing.

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Proceedings of 1st Göttingen GIS & Remote Sensing Days 7-8 Oct. 2004, Göttingen. Kleinn, C., Nieschulze, J., Sloboda, B. (Eds.) (2005): Remote Sensing & GIS for Environmental Studies: Applications in Forestry. Versuchsanstalt, Vol. 137, Sauerländer Verlag, Frankfurt, Main, pp. 204 – 213., 1/2004


Natural and anthropogenic influences such as catastrophic storm damage, the resultant - and enduring - bark beetle problem, and global climatic changes have weakened the resilience of alpine forests. Far-sighted management of protection forests at regional and national levels is necessary to ensure that appropriate preventive measures can be implemented by forestry and agricultural authorities. The success of such measures is crucially dependent on the availability of information about the status of alpine forests. Until now, however, recent and realistic information on the spatial distribution of forest condition on regional scale has not been available. The Forestry Management Department of the Province of Salzburg therefore commissioned a project whose aim is to map forests throughout the province using remote sensing for the retrieval of the most important forest parameters. The results of this project presented in this paper demonstrate that most of these parameters can be derived from SPOT IV MS and PAN data with satisfactory accuracy. The achievement of satisfactory mapping results depends to a great extent on precise image calibration, such as topographic and radiometric calibration of the satellite data. The methods developed in the project are currently being improved and made operational within the EU Integrated Project GEOLAND.

Keywords: Alpine protection forest, SPOT IV data, radiometric and topographic calibration