Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Research Notes
Publication Acceptance Date: September 18, 2008
Publication Date: October 1, 2008
Citation: Lang, M.W., McCarty, G.W. 2008. ASF data used to monitor wetland ecosystem services [abstract]. Alaska Satellite Facility News and Notes, Alaska Satellite Facility. 5(3):1-2. Technical Abstract: As the advantages of using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data to map ecosystems and monitor fundamental ecosystem processes are elucidated, natural resource managers are beginning to rely on SAR data as a viable alternative to optical data – which has been more commonly available and better understood by the scientific and environmental management communities in the past. SAR data have proven to be an important input to natural resource management decision support tools. One rapidly developing application of SAR data is the monitoring of key physical parameters (i.e., inundation and soil moisture) which allow the improved mapping of wetland extent and the estimation of wetland ecosystem services. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) is tasked with the evaluation and enhancement of conservation practices used to improve environmental health by reducing the impact of agriculture on freshwater and other natural resources. One focus of CEAP, is to evaluate the effectiveness of wetland conservation practices (e.g., wetland construction, wetland restoration, and other types of wetland enhancement) for improving the delivery of wetland ecosystem services relative to the provision of ecosystem services by native wetlands and prior converted wetlands on croplands. Thanks, largely in part to the Radarsat-1 data provided by ASF, the CEAP-Wetlands study is currently developing a tool based on SAR, other geospatial data, and in situ measurements to improve the mapping of forested wetlands and to monitor wetland hydroperiod (i.e, temporal fluctuations in wetland flooding and soil moisture) – a key driver of wetland ecosystem services.