The National Land Cover Database products are created through a cooperative project conducted by the Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) Consortium. The MRLC Consortium is a partnership of federal agencies (www.mrlc.gov), consisting of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), the National Park Service (NPS), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Previously, NLCD consisted of three major data releases based on a 10-year cycle. These include a circa 1992 conterminous U.S. land cover dataset with one thematic layer (NLCD 1992), a circa 2001 50-state/Puerto Rico updated U.S. land cover database (NLCD 2001) with three layers including thematic land cover, percent imperviousness, and percent tree canopy, and a 1992/2001 Land Cover Change Retrofit Product. With these national data layers, there is often a 5-year time lag between the image capture date and product release. In some areas, the land cover can undergo significant change during production time, resulting in products that may be perpetually out of date. To address these issues, this circa 2006 NLCD land cover product (NLCD 2006) was conceived to meet user community needs for more frequent land cover monitoring (moving to a 5-year cycle) and to reduce the production time between image capture and product release. NLCD 2006 is designed to provide the user both updated land cover data and additional information that can be used to identify the pattern, nature, and magnitude of changes occurring between 2001 and 2006 for the conterminous United States at medium spatial resolution.
For NLCD 2006, there are 3 primary data products: 1) NLCD 2006 Land Cover map; 2) NLCD 2001/2006 Change Pixels labeled with the 2006 land cover class; and 3) NLCD 2006 Percent Developed Imperviousness. Four additional data products were developed to provide supporting documentation and to provide information for land cover change analysis tasks: 4) NLCD 2001/2006 Percent Developed Imperviousness Change; 5) NLCD 2001/2006 Maximum Potential Change derived from the raw spectral change analysis; 6) NLCD 2001/2006 From-To Change pixels; and 7) NLCD 2006 Path/Row Index vector file showing the footprint of Landsat scene pairs used to derive 2001/2006 spectral change with change pair acquisition dates and scene identification numbers included in the attribute table.
In addition to the 2006 data products listed in the paragraph above, two of the original release NLCD 2001 data products have been revised and reissued. Generation of NLCD 2006 data products helped to identify some update issues in the NLCD 2001 land cover and percent developed imperviousness data products. These issues were evaluated and corrected, necessitating a reissue of NLCD 2001 data products (NLCD 2001 Version 2.0) as part of the NLCD 2006 release. A majority of NLCD 2001 updates occur in coastal mapping zones where NLCD 2001 was published prior to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Coastal Change Analysis Program (C-CAP) 2001 land cover products. NOAA C-CAP 2001 land cover has now been seamlessly integrated with NLCD 2001 land cover for all coastal zones. NLCD 2001 percent developed imperviousness was also updated as part of this process.
Land cover maps, derivatives and all associated documents are considered "provisional" until a formal accuracy assessment can be conducted. The NLCD 2006 is created on a path/row basis and mosaicked to create a seamless national product. Questions about the NLCD 2006 land cover product can be directed to the NLCD 2006 land cover mapping team at the USGS/EROS, Sioux Falls, SD (605) 594-6151 or email@example.com.
Purpose: The goal of this project is to provide the Nation with complete, current and consistent public domain information on its land use and land cover.
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