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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10204/1087

Title: South African land-cover characteristics database: a synopsis of the landscape
Authors: Fairbanks, DHK
Thompson, MW
Vink, DE
Newby, TS
Van den Berg, HM
Everard, DA
Keywords: Land cover database
Sustainable resource management
Thematic Mapper
Developing countries
Issue Date: Feb-2000
Publisher: Bureau Scientific Publishers
Citation: Fairbanks, DHK et al. 2000. South African land-cover characteristics database: a synopsis of the landscape. South African Journal of Science, Vol. 96(2), pp 69-82
Abstract: Accurate, up-to-date information on land cover and land-use is essential for strategic planning, sustainable resource management and environmental research. A land-cover database for South Africa, Swaziland and Lesotho, designed for use in a variety of regional modelling, monitoring and analytical endeavours, has been created. Database development involved (1) a stratification of natural land cover and human land-use, (2) a contextual classification of hardcopy multispectral data derived from Landset Thematic Mapper(TM) imagery colled from 1994 to 1996, and (3) a stratified post-classification accuracy assessment using a large sample of field data. The resultant database has yielded substantial information to characterize the landscapes of South Africa. The analysis uses data recorded by province, primary hydrological catchment and vegetation biome to explore the land-cover characteristics of South African, Swaziland and Lesotho. Aggregated results show that South Africa comprises the following general surface types: 5.8% forest and woodland; 0.3% forest; 17.6% thicket and bushland; 34.1% shrubland and low fynbos; 0.2% herbland; 12.3% grassland; 12.2% cultivated lands; 1.5% forest plantations; 0.4% waterbodies; 0.5% wetland; 0.2% barren rock; 4.9% degraded lands; 1.1% urban/built-up lands; and 0.14% mines and quarries. The accuracy of the database ranges form 51% to 93%, depending on geographical area, with corresponding kappa index from 35 to 88.
Description: Copyright: 2000 Bureau Scientific Publishers
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10204/1087
ISSN: 0038-2353
Appears in Collections:Resource-based sustainable development
Environmental and resource economics
General science, engineering & technology

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