11 October 2020

Tree canopy mapping: you can find your place!


Today the collaborative LiDAR canopy and tree height mapping which 17 Councils in partnership with the State Government funded in 2019, has been made publicly accessible alongside the online Heat Mapping via the Department for Environment and Water Urban Heat and Tree Mapping viewer.


LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) technology was used to capture high resolution, three-dimensional tree data by flying across the metropolitan Adelaide study area in April 2018 and October - November 2019. The result is an accurate benchmark of canopy cover and tree height at a point in time, which can be replicated in the future to track tree loss or gain trends.


In a first for Adelaide, data captured for every tree greater than three metres in height on public and private land shows tree canopy represents 23% of the metropolitan study area. This is a conservative estimate as trees under three metres in height are not included as part of this analysis, i.e. recent plantings undertaken by local governments are not captured.


Tree canopy mapping on the online viewer can be used alongside heat maps, building footprint, tree health (NDVI) and social vulnerability layers to help the community and governments make better informed decisions for retaining and replacing trees. It is being used by councils to inform tree planting strategies and investments, as well as state government policies, like the Planning and Design Code. 

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