A hierarchical land-use classification system for Hawaii was developed, and land use on the island of Oahu was mapped. The land-use classification system emphasizes agriculture, developed (urban), and barren/mining uses. Areas with other land uses (conservation, forest reserve, natural areas, wetlands, water, and barren [sand, rock, or soil] regions, and unmanaged vegetation [native or exotic]) were defined as 'other.' Multiple sources of digital orthophotographs from 1998 and 1999 were used as source data. The 1998 island of Oahu land-use data are provided in digital format at http://water.usgs.gov/lookup/getspatial?oahu_lu98 for use in a Geographic Information System (GIS), at 1:24,000-scale with minimum mapping units of 2 hectares (4.9 acres) area and 30-meters (98.4 feet) feature width.
In 1998, a total of 59,195 acres (15.4 percent) of the island of Oahu were classified as agricultural land use; 98,663 acres (25.7 percent) were classified as developed; 1,522 acres (0.4 percent) were classified as barren/mining; and 224,331 acres (58.5 percent) were classified as other. An accuracy assessment identified 98 percent accuracy for all land-use classes. In windward (moister) areas, dense vegetation and canopy cover along with rapid recolonization by vegetation potentially obscured land use from photo-interpretation. While in leeward (drier) areas, sparse vegetative cover and slower vegetation recolonization may have resulted in more frequent recognition of apparent land-use patterns.