CEC Releases Land Cover Map of North America – Highest Quality Available

Montreal, 20 February 2020—The North American Land Change Monitoring System (NALCMS), a trinational initiative coordinated by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC), has released a new map depicting land cover across North America for the year 2015 at a 30-metre spatial resolution. To view and download the map at no cost, click here.

The 2015 publication is the highest quality land cover product for North America to date, boasting improved accuracy in land cover classification over the previous 2010 product.

Created from a composite of images assembled from satellite observations (Landsat and RapidEye), this product is the result of a collaborative effort that harmonized land cover classification systems from Canada, Mexico and the United States into 19 classes, providing a seamless view of the continent at a consistent scale.

This dataset offers invaluable support to international organizations, nongovernmental conservation organizations, land managers, scientific researchers and others by allowing them to better understand the dynamics and continental-scale patterns of North America’s land cover and to conduct both regional and local-level analyses.

North American Land Change Monitoring System

NALCMS is a joint initiative among Natural Resources Canada (NRCan)’s Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation (CCMEO), the United States Geological Survey (USGS), and three Mexican organizations: the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía—INEGI), the National Commission for the Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (Comisión Nacional para el Conocimiento y Uso de la Biodiversidad—Conabio), and the National Forestry Commission (Comisión Nacional Forestal—Conafor), and supported by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC). http://www.cec.org/nalcms.

The North American Environmental Atlas

The NALCMS is part of the CEC’s North American Environmental Atlas bringing together maps, data and interactive map layers to allow for  continental and regional perspective on environmental issues that cross boundaries.