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A Long-Term, Consistent Land Cover History of the Southeastern United States


Dannenberg, Matthew P.; Song, Conghe H.; & Hakkenberg, Christopher R. (2018). A Long-Term, Consistent Land Cover History of the Southeastern United States. Photogrammetric Engineering & Remote Sensing, 84(9), 559-568.


Land-Cover/Land-Use (Lay) change is a critical aspect of global environmental change, with profound social and ecological consequences. The southeastern U.S. in particular is changing rapidly, but a long-term, consistent LCLU history at fine spatial resolution does not exist for the region. Here, we present a new LCLU history of the southeastern U.S. based on temporal extension of the 2011 National Land Cover Database (NLCD) back to 1986. We used Automatic Adaptive Signature Generalization (AASG) to generate this product from Landsat TM/ETM+ imagery and ancillary topographic information. AASG identifies stable sites between two images and uses these stable sites to generate a new training dataset for updating a classification from one date to the next. Our long-term LCLU classifications are broadly consistent with the NLCD while providing a much longer historical record for characterizing recent changes in the southeastern U.S. and contextualizing their consequences for ecosystem services in the region.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Photogrammetric Engineering & Remote Sensing


Dannenberg, Matthew P.
Song, Conghe H.
Hakkenberg, Christopher R.