Products generated by the Global Forest Cover Change project will help the international science community meet several goals across multiple institutions, including those of the Global Observation of Forest and Land Cover Dynamics (GOFC-GOLD) Program. From their web site, "GOFC-GOLD is a panel of GTOS and its overall objective is to improve the quality and availability of observations of forests and land cover at regional and global scales and to produce useful, timely and validated information products from these data for a wide variety of users. GOFC-GOLD has proposed a systematic program for coarse resolution (250 - 1000 m) land cover mapping on a five-year cycle, combined with periodic mapping and monitoring of forested areas at fine resolution (~25 m)." Discussion of how both the high resolution and moderate resolution forest cover change products are needed and how they meet GOFC needs is available from multiple sources (Gutman 2004). How the GOFC-GOLD goals for forest cover change products satisfy GEO tasks are also documented (Herold 2006). And the continuing cross fertilization of objectives see the GFCC ESDRs suiting demands from IGOL, CEOS, and GTOS. For example, in IGOL Report No. 8 states that " There is therefore a critical requirement to move from research to operational monitoring capabilities for land cover, with operational data and product suites that are better defined, flexible and openly available" (Townshend 2008, 11). The report continues to explain parameters needed for global land cover, its importance to modeling, and the need for products derived at the mid-resolution as well as the moderate resolution scales. GFCC ESDRs satisfy this goal regarding forest cover. Another example of the universal, complimentary nature of the ESDRs is how they match parameters with the land cover Essential Climate Variable, as detailed by GCOS. These forest cover change products, with additional products, are needed to fulfill a variety of international science goals.


  • CEOS:
  • GCOS:
  • GTOS:
  • IGOL:
  • Gutman, G., Janetos, A.C., Justice, C.O. et al. 2004. Land Change Science: Observing, Monitoring and Understanding Trajectories of Change on the Earth's Surface. Kluwer Academic. Boston.
  • Herold, M., Sambale, J. and C. Schmullius. 2006. Report of the 3rd Land Cover Implementation Team meeting as part of the GOFC-GOLD Symposium on Forest and Land Cover Observations. GOFC-GOLD. Jena.
  • Townshend, J.R., Latham, J., Arino, O., et al. 2008. Integrated Global Observations of the Land, An IGOS P Theme. IGOL Report No. 8. GTOS 54. FAO. Rome.
  • Townshend, J.R., Justice, C.O., Skole, D.L, Belward, A., Janetos, A.C., Gunawan, I., Goldammer, J. and B. Lee. 2004. Meeting the Goals of GOFC: an Evaluation of Progress and Steps for the Future. from Gutman et al. 2004. Land Change Science: Observing, Monitoring and Understanding Trajectories of Change on the Earth's Surface. Kluwer Academic. Boston. pp 31-52.
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