Integrating cloud-based workflows in continental-scale cropland extent classification.
Accurate information on cropland spatial distribution is required for global-scale assessments and agricultural land use policies. Cloud computing platforms such as Google Earth Engine (GEE) provide unprecedented opportunities for large-scale classifications of Landsat data. We developed a novel method to fuse pixel-based random forest classification of continental-scale Landsat data on GEE and an object-based segmentation approach known as recursive hierarchical segmentation (RHSeg). Using our fusion method, we produced a continental-scale cropland extent map for North America at 30 m spatial resolution for the nominal year 2010. The total cropland area for North America was estimated at 275.18 million hectares (Mha). The overall accuracies of the map are >90% across the continent. This map also compares well with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) cropland data layer (CDL), Agriculture and Agri-food Canada (AAFC) annual crop inventory (ACI), and the Mexican government agency Servicio de Información Agroalimentaria y Pesquera (SIAP)'s agricultural boundaries. Furthermore, our map compared well with sub-country statistics including state-wise and county-wise cropland statistics in regression models resulting in R2 > 0.84. This key contribution paves the way for more detailed products such as crop intensity, crop type, and crop irrigation, and provides a method for creating high-resolution cropland extent maps for other countries where spatial information about croplands are not as prevalent.
Natural Resources and the Environment
Remote Sensing of Environment
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Massey, Richard, Temuulen T. Sankey, Kamini Yadav, Russell G. Congalton, and James Tilton. 2018. Integrating cloud-based workflows in continental-scale cropland extent classification. Remote Sensing of Environment. Vol. 219. pp. 162-179. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2018.10.013
© 2018 Elsevier Inc.