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LANDFIRE Existing Vegetation Cover

Metadata Updated: July 6, 2024

The Existing Vegetation Cover (EVC) product depicts percent canopy cover by life form and is an important input to other LANDFIRE mapping efforts. EVC is generated separately for tree, shrub and herbaceous life forms using training data and a series of geospatial predictor layers. Plots from the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program of USDA Forest Service ( were used as the training data for tree canopy cover mapping, with canopy cover of the plots estimated from stem-mapped tree data and calibrated with line intercept field measurements of canopy cover (Toney and others 2009). Shrub and herbaceous canopy cover training data were also derived from plot-level, ground-based visual assessments. More information regarding contributors of field plot data can be found at Regression tree models were developed separately for each life form using the training data and a combination of multitemporal Landsat data, terrain data from a digital elevation model, and biophysical gradient data layers. Cubist software was used for modeling. The derived regression tree equations were then applied to the geospatial predictor data to create 30-m resolution, life form specific data layers (i.e., separate data layers are generated for tree, shrub and herbaceous vegetation cover). Each of the derived data layers (tree, shrub, herbaceous) has a potential range of 0-100 percent canopy cover. Tree, shrub and herbaceous values were binned into discrete classes (up to 10 bins at 10 percent intervals for tree, shrub and herbaceous canopy cover). The final EVC layer was evaluated and rectified through a series of QA/QC measures to ensure that the life form of the canopy cover code matched the life form of the LANDFIRE Existing Vegetation Type (EVT) layer. EVC is used in the development of subsequent LANDFIRE data layers. LF 2014 (lf_1.4.0) used modified LF 2010 (lf_1.2.0) data as a launching point to incorporate disturbance and its severity, both managed and natural, which occurred on the landscape 2013 and 2014. Specific examples of disturbance are: fire, vegetation management, weather, and insect and disease. The final disturbance data used in LANDFIRE is the result of several efforts that include data derived in part from remotely sensed land change methods, Monitoring Trends in Burn Severity (MTBS), and the LANDFIRE Events data call. Vegetation growth was modeled where both disturbance and non-disturbance occurs. Urban, agriculture, and wetlands were refined to reflect a 2012 landscape using the National Conservation Easement Database, National Wetlands Inventory (NWI), and Common Land Unit database (CLU) data.

Access & Use Information

Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

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Metadata Created Date August 1, 2023
Metadata Updated Date July 6, 2024

Metadata Source

Harvested from DOI EDI

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date August 1, 2023
Metadata Updated Date July 6, 2024
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Identifier USGS:64beabb7d34e70357a31c4e5
Data Last Modified 20230928
Category geospatial
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 010:12
Metadata Context
Metadata Catalog ID
Schema Version
Catalog Describedby
Harvest Object Id 3f53a808-4d59-4b52-a489-781fbfa02e3c
Harvest Source Id 52bfcc16-6e15-478f-809a-b1bc76f1aeda
Harvest Source Title DOI EDI
Metadata Type geospatial
Old Spatial -127.9878,22.7657,-65.2544,51.6202
Publisher Hierarchy White House > U.S. Department of the Interior > U.S. Geological Survey
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash 9bd5d391913c85cbf5f14a8ef8152921327cc7ccdc730c2d0e706088613ce2ff
Source Schema Version 1.1
Spatial {"type": "Polygon", "coordinates": -127.9878, 22.7657, -127.9878, 51.6202, -65.2544, 51.6202, -65.2544, 22.7657, -127.9878, 22.7657}

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