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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Measurement of oak tree density with Landsat TM data for estimating biogenic isoprene emissions in Tennessee, USA

  • Author(s): Baugh, W
  • Klinger, L
  • Guenther, A
  • Geron, C
  • et al.

Isoprene emissions from oak trees in the eastern USA play an important role in tropospheric ozone pollution. Oak trees (Quercus) emit an order of magnitude more isoprene than most other emitting tree species, and are by far the largest source of biogenic isoprene in the eastern US. We used Landsat TM data to measure oak tree abundance near Oak Ridge. Tennessee, to estimate fluxes of isoprene. The Landsat classification was performed using multi-date data: supervised classification techniques, and an iterative approach. Training sites were selected based on transect data, and ten vegetation classes were mapped. A supervised classification algorithm called the Spectral Angle Mapper was used to classify the data. Empirical vegetation emission data were used to estimate the isoprene flux from each of the vegetation classes. The resultant isoprene flux maps were compared with concentrations measured in the field, and a good correspondence was observed. We also compare the Landsat classification with three other landcover schemes including the USGS’s Global Landcover Classification, which is based on AVHRR data. Results from these landcover classifications are used as input for models that predict tropospheric ozone production and are used to investigate ozone control strategies.

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