Monitoring Global Forest Cover Using Data Mining

Date of Submission: 
July 14, 2010
Report Number: 
Report PDF: 
Forests are a critical component of the planet's ecosystem. Unfortunately, there has been significant degradation in forest cover over recent decades as a result of logging, conversion to crop,plantation, and pasture land, or disasters (natural or man made) such as forest fires, floods, and hurricanes. As a result, significant attention is being given to the sustainable use of forests. A key to effective forest management is quantifiable knowledge about changes in forest cover. This requires identification and characterization of changes and the discovery of the relationship between these changes and natural and anthropogenic variables. In this paper, we present our preliminary efforts and achievements in addressing some of these tasks along with the challenges and opportunities that need to be addressed in the future. At a higher level, our goal is to provide an overview of the exciting opportunities and challenges in developing and applying data mining approaches to provide critical information for forest and land use management.