Pacific Islands Region

U.S. federal agencies often use different methodologies and classification schemes to develop land cover products, often resulting in conflicts and inconsistencies.  When NOAA and the U.S. Forest Service were interested in updating their dataDigital Coast for the U.S. territory of Guam, they decided partner on the project, thereby addressing potential conflicts in their land cover products. The partnership created one mapping effort resulting in two seamless land cover mapping products aimed at serving the needs of both the forestry and coastal management communities. Each agency was able to lend its unique expertise in land cover mapping, resulting in refined classifications in the forestry and coastal zones. Additionally, each agency reduced its operating costs by sharing data and resources.

NOAA and Forest Service audiences received more detailed land cover classification at a lower cost than previous land cover mapping efforts.  The new products enabled diverse analyses, ranging from coastal zone permitting to identifying the preferred nesting habitats for Guam’s native bird species. Each land cover product matched the other seamlessly, resulting in less confusion and indecision about which might be best.


POC:  Ross Winans,

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