Forest Cover Change in the Toledo District, Belize from 1975 to 1999: A Remote Sensing Approach

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Measuring land-cover change is an essential part of sustainable conservation planning. This project uses Landsat MSS and ETM+ data to document forest cover change in the Toledo District, Belize, from 1975 to 1999 and provides an initial assessment of why these changes took place. Supervised and subpixel classification methods were employed. The results showed an aggregate forest loss of almost 10 percent, which is approximately 36,000 ha. Deforestation expanded significantly in the most populous Mayan areas of central Toledo District and along the Guatemalan border. Subpixel classification results showed that in 1999 the most densely forested areas were in northern Toledo District in the Maya Mountains.

Keywords: Belize; land-cover change; land-use; satellite remote sensing

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Portland State University 2: University of Northern Iowa 3: Geo InSight International, Inc.

Publication date: May 1, 2005

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