Land cover

  • land cover
  • Land cover is the physical state of the land surface. It is the combination of vegetation, soil, rock, water and human-made structures, which make up the earth's landscape. The land cover is the interface between the earth's crust and the atmosphere, influencing the exchange of energy and matter in the climatic system and biogeochemical cycles.
Abstract from DBPedia
    Land cover is the physical material at the surface of Earth. Land covers include grass, asphalt, trees, bare ground, water, etc. Earth cover is the expression used by ecologist Frederick Edward Clements that has its closest modern equivalent being vegetation. The expression continues to be used by the United States Bureau of Land Management. There are two primary methods for capturing information on land cover: field survey and analysis of remotely sensed imagery. Land change models can be built from these types of data to assess changes in land cover over time. One of the major land cover issues (as with all natural resource inventories) is that every survey defines similarly named categories in different ways. For instance, there are many definitions of "forest"—sometimes within the same organisation—that may or may not incorporate a number of different forest features (e.g., stand height, canopy cover, strip width, inclusion of grasses, and rates of growth for timber production). Areas without trees may be classified as forest cover "if the intention is to re-plant" (UK and Ireland), while areas with many trees may not be labelled as forest "if the trees are not growing fast enough" (Norway and Finland).