Assessing aboveground tropical forest biomass using Google Earth canopy images

Ecological Applications put an interesting paper in press these days. The study by Pierre Ploton and colleagues uses freely available Google Earth canopy images as a data source to estimate above ground biomass (AGB) in the tropics, and compares the results to estimates made with commercial counterparts such as IKONOS images. I liked the study a lot, not only because the topic of remote-sensed AGB estimation is a timely one for tropical ecology and conservation science, but also because it shows the increasing potential of using publicly available spatial data in a clever way.

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