URISA Offers LiDAR Webinar Series

URISAURISA, the Association for GIS Professionals, is offering a three part LiDAR webinar series for all members of the geospatial community. Part two of the series, Project Planning, is scheduled for Wednesday, May 23rd. Part three, Data Quality Control, will take place on Wednesday, June 27th.

The first session, LiDAR 101, has been archived and is available for purchase. Please visit www.urisa.org/urisaconnect to learn more about viewing archived URISA Connect webinars.

The purpose of this webinar series is to review concepts involving light detection and ranging (LiDAR), its real-world applications, current visualization, data processing and quality control approaches. The target audience of this webinar is at the beginner to intermediate level, including GIS managers, geospatial analysts, survey professionals, scientists and students.

Series presenter, Mark Stucky, currently serves as the MARS® Technical Support Specialist for the GeoSpatial Solutions division of Merrick & Company, a professional engineering services firm based in Aurora, Colorado (USA). In this position, Mark is responsible for technical support and software maintenance of MARS®, Merrick’s LiDAR visualization and data processing software solution. Mark is extensively involved in MARS® design, testing, and documentation.

URISA Connect is an effective way to develop your professional skills and even work towards GISCI Certification Education Hours. URISA Webinars count towards the EDU-2 section of the application.

For more information about this series, or to register, please visit www.urisa.org/uclidar.

Other upcoming URISA Connect events include the return of the popular Asset Management series. For more information, please visit www.urisa.org/urisaconnect.

[Source: URISA press release]

Change Detection Methods for Multi-temporal Analysis of Satellite Data Aimed at Environmental Risk Monitoring

FIG 2012


“In the last years the topic of Environmental monitoring has raised a particular importance, also according to minor short-term stability and predictability of climatic events. Facing this situation, often in terms of emergency, involves high and unpredictable costs for public Agencies.

Change detection before and after filter application

Change detection before and after filter application

“Prevention of damages caused by natural disasters does not regards only weather forecasts, but implies the constant attention and practice of monitoring and control of human activity on territory. Practically, the problem is not knowing if and when an event will affect a determined area, but recognizing the possible damages if this event happened, by adopting the adequate measures to reduce them to a minimum, and requiring the necessary tools for a timely intervention. On the other hand, the surveying technologies should be the most possible accurate and updatable in order to guarantee high standards, involving the analysis of a great amount of data. The management of such data requires the integration and calculation systems with specialized software and fast and reliable connection and communication networks.

“Change detection analysis serve to facilitate individuation of environmental temporal variations, contributing to reduce the users intervention by means of the processes automation and improving in a progressive way the qualitative and quantitative accuracy of results. The research investigate automatic methods on land cover transformations by means of “Change detection” techniques executable on satellite data that are heterogeneous for spatial and spectral resolution with homogenization and registration in an unique digital information environment.

“In the present work we tested some areas of study particularly interesting for the knowledge of the morphology changes of land cover, in particular the area of the coast of Manfredonia characterized by the presence of important industrial sites and protected area of the Park of Alta Murgia with frequent episodes of land transformation.”

Integrating Ecosystem-service Tradeoffs into Land-use Decisions

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Published online 23 April 2012

Joshua H. Goldstein, Giorgio Caldarone, Thomas Kaeo Duarte, Driss Ennaanay, Neil Hannahs,
Guillermo Mendoza, Stephen Polasky, Stacie Wolny, and Gretchen C. Daily

“Recent high-profile efforts have called for integrating ecosystem-service values into important societal decisions, but there are few demonstrations of this approach in practice. We quantified ecosystem-service values to help the largest private landowner in Hawaii, Kamehameha Schools, design a land-use development plan that balances multiple private and public values on its North Shore land holdings (Island of O’ahu) of ∼10,600 ha. We used the InVEST software tool to evaluate the environmental and financial implications of seven planning scenarios encompassing contrasting land-use combinations including biofuel feedstocks, food crops, forestry, livestock, and residential development.

Maps of study region showing provision for the base landscape

Maps of study region showing provision for the base landscape of (A) water-quality improvement (nitrogen export reduction), (B) carbon storage (in above- and belowground pools), and (C) annual financial return from the agricultural fields.

“All scenarios had positive financial return relative to the status quo of negative return. However, tradeoffs existed between carbon storage and water quality as well as between environmental improvement and financial return. Based on this analysis and community input, Kamehameha Schools is implementing a plan to support diversified agriculture and forestry. This plan generates a positive financial return ($10.9 million) and improved carbon storage (0.5% increase relative to status quo) with negative relative effects on water quality (15.4% increase in potential nitrogen export relative to status quo). The effects on water quality could be mitigated partially (reduced to a 4.9% increase in potential nitrogen export) by establishing vegetation buffers on agricultural fields. This plan contributes to policy goals for climate change mitigation, food security, and diversifying rural economic opportunities. More broadly, our approach illustrates how information can help guide local land-use decisions that involve tradeoffs between private and public interests.”

Ocean Basemap Now Accepting Contributions

The Ocean Basemap, a bathymetric map service by Esri released on June 21st of 2011 (World Hydrography Day), is being used by many ocean GIS users around the world; initially, the Ocean Basemap was created with data from the General Bathymetric Chart of the Oceans (GEBCO), IHO-IOC GEBCO Gazetteer of Undersea Feature Names, NOAA, Seafloor Mapping Lab of the California State University Monterey Bay, National Geographic, DeLorme, and Esri.

Due to its great success and in an attempt to enrich and improve data resolution, the Ocean Basemap  is now open to receive bathymetric data contributions from data providers such as Hydrographic Offices and academia,  for bathymetry and named features. If you want to learn more details please contact oceanbasemapteam@esri.com.