By NASA [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

This article was originally published on IUCN NL


“Landscape approaches seek to achieve social, economic, and environmental objectives in areas where agriculture, mining, and other productive land uses compete with environmental and biodiversity goals. When applying a landscape approach, the first step is to identify which land use is located where, occupied by who, and how the dynamics of the where and who has changed over time. Only when this basic spatial information is available to stakeholders in a landscape, feasible conservation and development tradeoffs can be made.

Technological advances in the satellite and GIS industry, cloud computing, and machine learning have accelerated the development of a wide range of powerful web-tools that bridge landscape practitioners and big data suppliers. In this blog we give you our top five of online and free-to-use spatial tools that give you the land use information you need to feed into dialogues about landscape management.

1. Access satellite images

Sometimes we just want to know what a landscape looks like from the air without interpretations of land cover. The Sentinel Hub EO browser makes it possible to browse and compare full resolution images from various satellites. You simply go to your area of interest, select criteria such as time range and cloud coverage, and inspect the resulting data from different sources. The process behind your request hides a query for relevant scenes and their bands, decompression of relevant parts, and creates a mosaic. The visual comparison tool makes it possible to observe changes in the land from 1984 onward…”

Sentinel Hub EO browser

Read on access the other tools at: IUCN NL.