In recent years, advances in high-density lidar and hyperspectral imagery have offered new tools to states and municipalities for vegetation management. Quantum Spatial’s Andrew Brenner and Zach Raymer describe the applications and outcomes of this emerging science in American City & County.
One of the most important functions for lidar and hyperspectral imagery in city environments is to quantify canopy cover percentage. High canopy cover percentages are beneficial in slowing the flow of rainwater and reducing stress on storm water systems. In addition, understanding the health of all trees in a community enables local governments to manage threats such as invasive tree or insect species, and to assess potential fire risks in areas prone to forest fires. The data serves as an early-warning system, allowing state and regional agencies to conduct preventive maintenance and reduce the impact of natural disasters.