PREP Publications


Estimates of impervious surface acreage in 1990, 2000, and 2005 were generated for an 11-town region in York County, Maine, covered by the Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership (PREP). The project extended previous work done in New Hampshire, relying on comparable satellite-based data sources and image processing methodologies. As a result, standardized impervious surface estimates are now available for the entirety of the PREP region. The impervious surface estimates were derived by applying both traditional and subpixel classification techniques to 30-meter Landsat 5 Thematic Mapper (TM) and Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) satellite image data. The classifications indicated that 3.3% (9,098 acres) of the study area was impervious in 1990, with increases to 5.3 % (14,646 acres) in 2000 and 6.3% (17,394 acres) in 2005. At the subwatershed level, the Portsmouth Harbor subwatershed recorded the highest percentage of impervious surface acreage in 1990, 2000, and 2005 with 7.8% coverage (1,283 acres), 12.3% coverage (2,009 acres), and 14.5% coverage (2,380 acres) respectively. The regional accuracy assessment indicated an overall accuracy of 97.0% for the 1990 data, 93.0% for the 2000 data, and 92.0% for the 2005 data. These results reflect the overall presence/absence of impervious surfaces within the randomly selected assessment pixels. The three data sets have been archived in the GRANIT GIS clearinghouse, thereby making them available to the coastal resource community as well as the general public. The data are appropriate for watershed and subwatershed level characterizations. Users are discouraged from accessing them to support larger scale mapping and applications.

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Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership, Durham, NH

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