Canadian Forest Service Publications

Uncertainty in photo-interpreted forest inventory variables and effects on estimates of error in Canada’s National Forest Inventory. 2012. Magnussen, S.; Russo, G. Forestry Chronicle 88(4):439-447.

Year: 2012

Issued by: Pacific Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 34677

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.5558/tfc2012-080

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Canada’s National Forest Inventory (NFI) relies on photo-interpreted forest resource data provided by provincial and territorial agencies. NFI data are collected at regular intervals in time from a nominal 20 × 20 km network of 2 × 2 km photoplots. Attribute-specific NFI estimates of precision include contributions from sampling errors and uncertainty in the source data. We assessed this uncertainty in NFI photo-interpreted forest attribute data from New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Attributes examined were: cover type, age, maturity (class), crown closure, height, volume, and area associated with an attribute. Monte-Carlo simulations, with measurement errors superimposed on NFI data assumed to be error-free, showed that estimates of precision were inflated by an average of 7% (range 0%–36%) due to the uncertainty in the source data. Species misclassification and age determination were the largest sources of uncertainty.