Sustainable and ecosystem-based marine spatial planning is a priority of Pacific Island countries basing their economy on marine resources. The urgency of management coral reef systems and associated coastal environments, threatened by the effects of climate change, require a detailed habitat mapping of the present status and a future monitoring of changes over time. Here, we present a remote sensing study using free available Sentinel-2 imagery for mapping at large scale the most sensible and high value habitats (corals, seagrasses, mangroves) of Palau Republic (Micronesia, Pacific Ocean), carried out without any sea truth validation. Remote sensing 'supervised' and 'unsupervised' classification methods applied to 2017 Sentinel-2 imagery with 10 m resolution together with comparisons with free ancillary data on web platform and available scientific literature were used to map mangrove, coral, and seagrass communities in the Palau Archipelago. This paper addresses the challenge of multispectral benthic mapping estimation using commercial software for preprocessing steps (ERDAS ATCOR) and for benthic classification (ENVI) on the base of satellite image analysis. The accuracy of the methods was tested comparing results with reference NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Silver Spring, MD, USA) habitat maps achieved through Ikonos and Quickbird imagery interpretation and sea-truth validations. Results showed how the proposed approach allowed an overall good classification of marine habitats, namely a good concordance of mangroves cover around Palau Archipelago with previous literature and a good identification of coastal habitats in two sites (barrier reef and coastal reef) with an accuracy of 39.8-56.8%, suitable for survey and monitoring of most sensible habitats in tropical remote islands.

Application of Sentinel-2 multispectral data for habitat mapping of Pacific Islands: Palau Republic (Micronesia, Pacific Ocean)

Immordino F.;Barsanti M.;Candigliota E.;Cocito S.;Delbono I.;Peirano A.
2019

Abstract

Sustainable and ecosystem-based marine spatial planning is a priority of Pacific Island countries basing their economy on marine resources. The urgency of management coral reef systems and associated coastal environments, threatened by the effects of climate change, require a detailed habitat mapping of the present status and a future monitoring of changes over time. Here, we present a remote sensing study using free available Sentinel-2 imagery for mapping at large scale the most sensible and high value habitats (corals, seagrasses, mangroves) of Palau Republic (Micronesia, Pacific Ocean), carried out without any sea truth validation. Remote sensing 'supervised' and 'unsupervised' classification methods applied to 2017 Sentinel-2 imagery with 10 m resolution together with comparisons with free ancillary data on web platform and available scientific literature were used to map mangrove, coral, and seagrass communities in the Palau Archipelago. This paper addresses the challenge of multispectral benthic mapping estimation using commercial software for preprocessing steps (ERDAS ATCOR) and for benthic classification (ENVI) on the base of satellite image analysis. The accuracy of the methods was tested comparing results with reference NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Silver Spring, MD, USA) habitat maps achieved through Ikonos and Quickbird imagery interpretation and sea-truth validations. Results showed how the proposed approach allowed an overall good classification of marine habitats, namely a good concordance of mangroves cover around Palau Archipelago with previous literature and a good identification of coastal habitats in two sites (barrier reef and coastal reef) with an accuracy of 39.8-56.8%, suitable for survey and monitoring of most sensible habitats in tropical remote islands.
Climate change; Coral reefs; Habitat mapping; Mangroves; Remote Sensing; Sentinel-2; Vulnerable habitats
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12079/51832
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