Abstract. Longer growing seasons in Northern Ontario are predicted, as a result of climate change. There is the expectation that there will be increased land use conversion from natural forests in Northern Ontario to capitalise on the new economic opportunities resulting from longer growing seasons. This study examines the impacts the land conversion – from forest to agricultural environment – has on the greenhouse gas emissions and soil properties. We use remote sensing technologies for detecting these changes. This paper highlights an automatic method we developed for change detection. The method was applied to the satellite data over a predominantly vegetated area of Northern Ontario for the period 2001 to 2016. The study showed how the forest air and soil properties transform over time from various land disturbances, and how subsequent management schemes affect the environmental properties such as greenhouse gas emissions and the soil carbon stock.


  • Many times, a change in landcover is accompanied by a change in land use

  • Carbon stock comes from biomass and dead organic matter is comprised of woody debris, the forest floor, and soil

  • We developed a fully automatic change detection method based on the Land Surface Temperature (LST) and Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) (Ituen, Hu, 2021)

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A change in landcover is accompanied by a change in land use. Between 2007 and 2016, the total emissions from forestry and other land use change (e.g. afforestation, deforestation, wood harvest, peatland burning) amounted to 5.2 (±2.6) Gt CO2 per yr (IPCC 2019). The impact on soil organic carbon from land use changing from cropland to forest has been well documented in literature (Veldkamp E., 1994; de Moraes et al, 1996). One study indicated the soil carbon increased up to 20% in the twenty years following the land use conversion (de Moraes et al, 1996) while another quoted has seen reduction of up to 18% in the twenty-five years. The aim of this research is to estimate the carbon in soil as well as the final forest. This study highlights a novel approach to identifying landcover change using remotely sensed data It examines preliminary results of assessing the amounts of soil organic carbon and GHG’s from the landcover changes which occur in the region

Land Use and Land Cover Change Detection
Carbon and Greenhouse Gas Calculation Methods

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