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Developing land use/land cover parameterization for climate–land modelling in East Africa

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Regional climate modeling studies now have numerous choices in selecting land use/land cover (LULC) products to provide land surface parameter information. The various LULC products were developed with different objectives, methods and data sources. Not all new LULC products have land classes that match the land class types defined in climate models. More importantly, when used in regional climate models, simulation results can vary significantly depending on the LULC products. Thus, developing appropriate LULC parameterization for climate models becomes critical depending on objectives and efforts. The objective of this paper is to develop the most accurate LULC scheme possible for East Africa for implementation in the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS). A crosswalk procedure, based on assessments of various LULC products, was performed connecting land class types in RAMS and the newly created LULC scheme. No simulations are discussed here; rather, we present an outline of the procedures that were carried out to take advantage of the strengths of currently available LULC products, Africover and Global Land Cover 2000, for the purpose of conducting regional climate simulations.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Center for Global Change and Earth Observation, Department of Geography, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48823, USA

Publication date: 2006-10-10

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