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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

USFS #ForWarn: A cross-cutting forest resource management & decision-support system.

 ForWarn is an online, near real-time, satellite-based forest monitoring and assessment tool.
It detects and tracks potential disturbances in forests across the conterminous U.S. by producing new national forest change products every eight days. Since 2010, ForWarn has detected environmental threats to forests caused by known and unexpected insects, diseases, wildfires, extreme weather, and other natural or man-made events. 

Anyone can view ForWarn products online via Forest Change Assessment Viewer. Link

ForWarn works by comparing a current daily vegetation “greenness” index with “normal” greenness that would be expected for healthy, undisturbed vegetation growing at a given
location, for a given time. Expected greenness is developed from the historical MODIS satellite image record. 

ForWarn standard products include three types of disturbance maps, emphasizing forest disturbances of different ages (1-year, 3-year, and all MODIS years). ForWarn’s high monitoring frequency allows managers to be responsive, and also track post-disturbance recovery.

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