Methods used in the LJEA 2018 Land Cover Analysis
The 2018 LJEA analysis of land cover in the Lake James Watershed used the National Land Cover Database for 2001 and 2011. That database used multi-spectral LandSat images and image classification algorithms to assign a preliminary land cover to every 30-meter by 30-meter patch of land within the watershed. Before adding the data to the database, additional information such as topography, soils, local agricultural data, and other information was used to verify and refine the classification. The LJEA analysis tabulated land cover in each of the 11 Hydrologic Units (HU) that comprise the Lake James Watershed for 2001 and 2011. A map showing those HUs is here. Also tabulated was the land cover within 100-meter wide riparian zones along the major waterway in each HU. The analysis helps us understand the differences in water quality observed and allows us to look at how land cover changes may impact current and future water quality.
An informative, brief fact sheet about the National Land Cover Database is located here.
A copy of the UNC-Asheville student report on the methods used for the LJEA analysis is located here.