Forestry & Ecology Applications Area
Forest plays an important role to all life forms as well as in environmental and economic sustainability. Ecologically sustainable forest resources management requires a reliable spatial database that can be updated and retrieved for scientifically managing the forest resources. With the advent of Remote Sensing and Geospatial technology, it has become the most reliable tool to monitor and update or retrieve data for forest management purpose. North Eastern Space Applications Centre since its inception has been working in the field of monitoring of forest cover, forest inventory and growing stock assessment, biodiversity characterization, wildlife habitat modelling, biomass & carbon pool assessment etc. Different studies that are at present being carried out at the Centre are:
RS&GIS based inputs for Forest Working Plans
Ministry of Environment and Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC), Govt. of India adopted National Working Plan Code in 2014 for the management of forests under the prescriptions of a working plan/schemes prepared on the basis of principles of sustained management of forests and recognized silvicultural practices. Accordingly, exercise for RS&GIS base forest working plan input preparation has been taken up in the state of Arunachal Pradesh (entire State), Assam (21 divisions), Meghalaya (entire State) and Mizoram (Entire State) in collaboration with the respective State Forest Departments. The working plan for 27 reserve forests of Meghalaya distributed in three working circles has been approved by MoEFCC. The working plans for the Lunglei, North Vanlaiphai, Kolasib, Thenzawl, Aizawl and Chakma ADC divisions of Mizoram has also been approved by MoEFCC. Forest Resource Information System - a geoportal on forestry for easy access, retrieval, analysis and preparing management plan is being developed for each state.
Wildlife habitat & corridor monitoring
Wildlife habitats are under severe pressure due to increasing human population and encroachment, resulting in depletion, degradation and fragmentation of habitats, loss of corridors and an increased human – animal conflict. Towards management of wildlife habitat in NER region, studiesonmapping the suitable habitat of elephant (Rani & Garbhanga RFs) and tigers (Dampa Tiger Reserve) and also to identify the potential corridor for the movement of wildlife have been carried out.
Above ground biomass estimation using SAR data in tropical and subtropical forests of North East India
The studies aims to understand the potential of microwave data for estimating the above ground biomass representing different forest types of the undulating rugged terrain of region.
Invasive species monitoring
The study initiated to understand the potential use of reflectance based remote sensing techniques in identifying and monitoring the invasive species causing the devastation in wildlife habitats of NER.