NLCD: USGS National Land Cover Database

USGS/NLCD
Dataset Availability
1992-01-01T00:00:00 - 2017-01-01T00:00:00
Dataset Provider
Earth Engine Snippet
ee.ImageCollection("USGS/NLCD")
Tags
landcover shrub shrubland mrlc nlcd usgs blm

Description

NLCD (the National Land Cover Database) is a 30-m Landsat-based land cover database spanning 8 epochs (1992, 2001, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2011, 2013 and 2016). 1992 data are primarily based on unsupervised classification of Landsat data, while the rest of the images rely on the imperviousness data layer for the urban classes and on a decision-tree classification for the rest. The 1992 image is not directly comparable to any later editions of NLCD.

This dataset has one image for the continental US for each of the eight epochs, plus separate images for Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico in 2001 and 2011. (They could not be merged in due to having a different projection from the continental US images.)

Note that the impervious layers and tree cover layers for Alaska 2011 only have data for parts of Alaska. For the impervious layer, only the parts of Kenai Peninsula Borough and Anchorage Municipality are available. Tree cover is only available on a strip along the coast from the southern tip of the Alaskan Panhandle up through the Kenai Peninsula, plus Kodiak Island.

NLCD 2016 Shrub Component products characterize the percentage of each 30-meter pixel in the Western United States covered by shrub, herbaceous, bare ground, litter, sagebrush, big sagebrush and annual herbaceous, along with estimating shrub height and sagebrush height. These products have been produced by USGS in collaboration with the Bureau of Land Management.

NLCD products are created by the Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) Consortium, a partnership of federal agencies led by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Bands

Resolution
30 meters

Bands

Name Units Min Max Description
landcover 0 95

All images except NCLD2011_HI and NLCD2011_PR include the landcover classification scheme described in the 2016 Product Legend. The legends are also available as metadata on each image. The classes in the 2016 product legend are given below.

impervious % 0 100

Percent of the pixel covered by developed impervious surface. Included in images NLCD2001, NLCD2001_AK, NLCD2001_HI, NLCD2001_PR, NLCD2006, NLCD2011, NLCD2011_AK, and NLCD2016.

impervious_descriptor

Defines which impervious layer pixels are roads and provides the best fit description for impervious pixels that are not roads. Included in images NLCD2001, NLCD2006, NLCD2011, and NLCD2016.

percent_tree_cover % 0 100

Percent of the pixel that's covered by tree canopy. No masking of obvious non-tree areas is performed for this product. Included in images NLCD2011, NLCD2011_AK, NLCD2011_HI, and NLCD2011_PR.

percent_tree_error % 0 45

Standard error for the model as a percentage from 0 to 45. The higher the value, the greater the model uncertainty in estimating the canopy value for that cell. Included in NLCD2011, NLCD2011_AK, NLCD2011_HI, and NLCD2011_PR.

shrubland_annual_herbaceous % 0 100

The annual only grass and forb proportion in each in 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_bare_ground % 0 100

The bare ground proportion in each 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_big_sagebrush % 0 100

The proportion of big sagebrush canopy in each 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_herbaceous % 0 100

The annual and perennial grass and forb proportion in each 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_litter % 0 100

The dead plant material proportion in each 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_sagebrush % 0 100

The proportion of sagebrush canopy in each 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_sagebrush_height cms 0 997

Average height of sagebrush. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_shrub % 0 100

The proportion of shrub canopy in each 30m pixel. Included in NLCD2016.

shrubland_shrub_height cms 0 997

Average height of shrubs. Included in NLCD2016.

landcover Class Table

Value Color Description
11 466b9f Open water: areas of open water, generally with less than 25% cover of vegetation or soil.
12 d1def8 Perennial ice/snow: areas characterized by a perennial cover of ice and/or snow, generally greater than 25% of total cover.
21 dec5c5 Developed, open space: areas with a mixture of some constructed materials, but mostly vegetation in the form of lawn grasses. Impervious surfaces account for less than 20% of total cover. These areas most commonly include large-lot single-family housing units, parks, golf courses, and vegetation planted in developed settings for recreation, erosion control, or aesthetic purposes.
22 d99282 Developed, low intensity: areas with a mixture of constructed materials and vegetation. Impervious surfaces account for 20% to 49% percent of total cover. These areas most commonly include single-family housing units.
23 eb0000 Developed, medium intensity: areas with a mixture of constructed materials and vegetation. Impervious surfaces account for 50% to 79% of the total cover. These areas most commonly include single-family housing units.
24 ab0000 Developed high intensity: highly developed areas where people reside or work in high numbers. Examples include apartment complexes, row houses, and commercial/industrial. Impervious surfaces account for 80% to 100% of the total cover.
31 b3ac9f Barren land (rock/sand/clay): areas of bedrock, desert pavement, scarps, talus, slides, volcanic material, glacial debris, sand dunes, strip mines, gravel pits, and other accumulations of earthen material. Generally, vegetation accounts for less than 15% of total cover.
41 68ab5f Deciduous forest: areas dominated by trees generally greater than 5 meters tall, and greater than 20% of total vegetation cover. More than 75% of the tree species shed foliage simultaneously in response to seasonal change.
42 1c5f2c Evergreen forest: areas dominated by trees generally greater than 5 meters tall, and greater than 20% of total vegetation cover. More than 75% of the tree species maintain their leaves all year. Canopy is never without green foliage.
43 b5c58f Mixed forest: areas dominated by trees generally greater than 5 meters tall, and greater than 20% of total vegetation cover. Neither deciduous nor evergreen species are greater than 75% of total tree cover.
51 af963c Dwarf scrub: Alaska only areas dominated by shrubs less than 20 centimeters tall with shrub canopy typically greater than 20% of total vegetation. This type is often co-associated with grasses, sedges, herbs, and non-vascular vegetation.
52 ccb879 Shrub/scrub: areas dominated by shrubs less than 5 meters tall with shrub canopy typically greater than 20% of total vegetation. This class includes true shrubs, young trees in an early successional stage, or trees stunted from environmental conditions.
71 dfdfc2 Grassland/herbaceous: areas dominated by gramanoid or herbaceous vegetation, generally greater than 80% of total vegetation. These areas are not subject to intensive management such as tilling, but can be utilized for grazing.
72 d1d182 Sedge/herbaceous: Alaska only areas dominated by sedges and forbs, generally greater than 80% of total vegetation. This type can occur with significant other grasses or other grass like plants, and includes sedge tundra and sedge tussock tundra.
73 a3cc51 Lichens: Alaska only areas dominated by fruticose or foliose lichens generally greater than 80% of total vegetation.
74 82ba9e Moss: Alaska only areas dominated by mosses, generally greater than 80% of total vegetation.
81 dcd939 Pasture/hay: areas of grasses, legumes, or grass-legume mixtures planted for livestock grazing or the production of seed or hay crops, typically on a perennial cycle. Pasture/hay vegetation accounts for greater than 20% of total vegetation.
82 ab6c28 Cultivated crops: areas used for the production of annual crops, such as corn, soybeans, vegetables, tobacco, and cotton, and also perennial woody crops such as orchards and vineyards. Crop vegetation accounts for greater than 20% of total vegetation. This class also includes all land being actively tilled.
90 b8d9eb Woody wetlands: areas where forest or shrubland vegetation accounts for greater than 20% of vegetative cover and the soil or substrate is periodically saturated with or covered with water.
95 6c9fb8 Emergent herbaceous wetlands: areas where perennial herbaceous vegetation accounts for greater than 80% of vegetative cover and the soil or substrate is periodically saturated with or covered with water.

impervious_descriptor Class Table

Value Color Description
1 ff0000 Primary road in urban area : interstates and other major roads.
2 a20000 Primary road outside urban area : interstates and other major roads.
3 ffff00 Secondary road in urban area : non-interstate highways.
4 ffd400 Secondary road outside urban area : non-interstate highways.
5 0000ff Tertiary road in urban area : any two-lane road.
6 009ee0 Tertiary road outside urban area : any two-lane road.
7 ffffff Thinned road in urban area : small tertiary roads that generally are not paved and have been removed from the landcover but remain as part of the impervious surface product. These roads have been separated in the western United States so that a better categorization of developed features is represented in the landcover.
8 ffffff Thinned road outside urban area : small tertiary roads that generally are not paved and have been removed from the landcover but remain as part of the impervious surface product. These roads have been separated in the western United States so that a better categorization of developed features is represented in the landcover.
9 ffc0c8 Nonroad impervious surface in urban area.
10 ec82ec Nonroad impervious surface outside urban area.
11 006100 Energy production site in urban area : areas identified from the FrackTracker points and classified in coordination with the Landfire project.
12 00ff00 Energy production site outside urban area : areas identified from the FrackTracker points and classified in coordination with the Landfire project.

Image Properties

Image Properties

Name Type Description
landcover_class_names DOUBLE

Landcover class names

landcover_class_palette DOUBLE

Landcover class palette

landcover_class_values DOUBLE

Landcover class values

impervious_descriptor_class_names DOUBLE

Impervious descriptor class names

impervious_descriptor_class_palette DOUBLE

Impervious descriptor class palette

impervious_descriptor_class_values DOUBLE

Impervious descriptor class values

Terms of Use

Terms of Use

Most U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) information resides in the public domain and may be used without restriction. Additional information on Acknowledging or Crediting USGS as Information Source is available.

Citations

Citations:

Explore in Earth Engine

var dataset = ee.ImageCollection('USGS/NLCD');
var landcover = dataset.select('landcover');
var landcoverVis = {
  min: 0.0,
  max: 95.0,
  palette: [
    '466b9f', 'd1def8', 'dec5c5', 'd99282', 'eb0000', 'ab0000', 'b3ac9f',
    '68ab5f', '1c5f2c', 'b5c58f', 'af963c', 'ccb879', 'dfdfc2', 'd1d182',
    'a3cc51', '82ba9e', 'dcd939', 'ab6c28', 'b8d9eb', '6c9fb8'
  ],
};
Map.setCenter(-95, 38, 5);
Map.addLayer(landcover, landcoverVis, 'Landcover');

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