NLCD: USGS National Land Cover Database

USGS/NLCD
Dataset Availability
1992-01-01T00:00:00 - 2012-01-01T00:00:00
Dataset Provider
Earth Engine Snippet
ee.ImageCollection("USGS/NLCD")
Tags
landcover mrlc nlcd usgs

Description

NLCD (the National Land Cover Database) is a 30-m Landsat-based land cover database spanning 4 epochs (1992, 2001, 2006 and 2011). 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.

This dataset has one image for the continental US for each of the four epochs, plus a separate image for Alaska in 2011. (It 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 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 11 95

All images include a landcover classification scheme. NLCD2001, NLCD2006, NLCD2011, and NLCD2011_AK share the same land cover classification scheme described in the 2011 Product Legend. The classification scheme for NLCD1992 differs slightly and is available in the 1992 Product Legend. The legends are also available as metadata on each image. The classes in the 2011 product legend are given below.

impervious % 0 100

Percent of the pixel covered by developed impervious surface. Included in images NLCD2001, NLCD2006, and NLCD2011.

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 NLCD2001 and NLCD2011.

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.

landcover Class Table

Value Color Description
11 5475A8 Open water: areas of open water, generally with less than 25% cover of vegetation or soil.
12 ffffff Perennial ice/snow: areas characterized by a perennial cover of ice and/or snow, generally greater than 25% of total cover.
21 E8D1D1 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 E29E8C 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 ff0000 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 B50000 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 D2CDC0 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 85C77E 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 38814E 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 D4E7B0 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 DCCA8F 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 FDE9AA 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 FBF65D 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 CA9146 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 C8E6F8 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 64B3D5 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.

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

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: 11.0,
  max: 95.0,
  palette: [
    '5475A8', 'ffffff', 'E8D1D1', 'E29E8C', 'ff0000', 'B50000', 'D2CDC0',
    '85C77E', '38814E', 'D4E7B0', 'AF963C', 'DCCA8F', 'FDE9AA', 'D1D182',
    'A3CC51', '82BA9E', 'FBF65D', 'CA9146', 'C8E6F8', '64B3D5'
  ],
};
Map.setCenter(-115.356, 38.686, 5);
Map.addLayer(landcover, landcoverVis, 'Landcover');

Send feedback about...

Earth Engine Data Catalog