Keywords: forest management, geographic information systems, GIS, global warming, reforestation, remote sensing, climate change, biological diversity, Turkey, priority areas, forestry planning, crown closure, slope maps, soil moisture, satellite data
Identifying priority areas for reforestation using remote sensing and geographical information systems: a case study from Turkey
This study uses Landsat 7 ETM and IKONOS satellite data to estimate the priority areas for reforestation in a forest management planning unit of Turkey. Three important parameters, crown closure, slope and soil moisture, were used to identify potential reforestation areas. The existing crown closure classes were obtained from the forest stand type map of the study area. Slope map of the study area was created using a digital elevation model (DEM) digitised from digital topographic maps. Supervised classification method was used to classify soil moistures from the images. 12 priority areas for reforestation were estimated with the help of combined maps for crown closure (degraded and treeless areas), slope and soil moisture classes. The results showed that approximately 47% of the study area, which is suitable for reforestation, was included in the category of degraded and treeless forest areas.