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Change analysis in the United Arab Emirates: An investigation of techniques

Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing
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Abstract

Much of the landscape of the United Arab Emirates has been transformed over the past 15 years by massive afforestation, beautification, and agricultural programs. The "greening" of the United Arab Emirates has had environmental consequences, however, including degraded groundwater quality and possible damage to natural regional ecosystems.

Personnel from the Ground- Water Research project, a joint effort between the National Drilling Company of the Abu Dhabi Emirate and the U.S. Geological Survey, were interested in studying landscape change in the Abu Dhabi Emirate using Landsat thematic mapper (TM) data. The EROs Data Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota was asked to investigate land-cover change techniques that (1) provided locational, quantitative, and qualitative information on landcover change within the Abu Dhabi Emirate; and (2) could be easily implemented by project personnel who were relatively inexperienced in remote sensing. A number of products were created with 1987 and 1996 Landsat TM data using change-detection techniques, including univariate image differencing, an "enhanced" image differencing, vegetation index differencing, post-classification differencing, and changevector analysis.

The different techniques provided products that varied in levels of adequacy according to the specific application and the ease of implementation and interpretation. Specific quantitative values of change were most accurately and easily provided by the enhanced image-differencing technique, while the change-vector analysis excelled at providing rich qualitative detail about the nature of a change. 

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Change analysis in the United Arab Emirates: An investigation of techniques
Series title Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing
Volume 65
Issue 4
Year Published 1999
Language English
Publisher ASPRS
Contributing office(s) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center
Description 10 p.
First page 475
Last page 484