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Remote Sensing Application Center – ReSAC is accomplishing the Forest Downstream Services in the frame of EUFODOS FP7 Project in Bulgaria

The National Forest Strategy (2006-2015) of Bulgaria established the forest policy in the sector which reflects the global challenges as well as the agreements and directives related with the membership of Bulgaria in the European Union. These conditions lead to the need of establishment of a new effective system for multipurpose management of the forests, which needs new technologies and decisions to be implemented.

On the other hand Copernicus – the European Earth Observation Programme of the EU provides crucial environmental information (also on forests) based on the use of various types of satellite sensors. The Copernicus Core Services cover the whole Europe (for some products worldwide) and are developed in a centralized way, which purposes are to suit more to such organizations as specialized European agencies and directorates. On the other hand national and local users need more precise information both in relation to quality and reliability. Such products could be provided by the Copernicus Downstream Services, which are developed more and more in different areas: environment, forestry, natural disasters, ocean, climate, atmosphere etc.

EUFODOS Project, FP7 financed projects, aims at development of Forest Downstream Services for improved information on forest structure and damages. Remote Sensing Application Center – ReSAC as a project partner has developed several services for the Executive Forest Agencies (EFA), Bulgaria which will support the agency in its activities and reporting duties.

The first type of services are developed to support one of the main challenges outlined in the National Forest Strategy – forest inventory. The service delivers forest area map, forest type map and crown cover density map based on the HR and VHR images. This thematic information could be directly used in the forest management planning as well as in update of the national forest cadastre, the so called Forest Management Plans.

High scale forest area, forest type and crown cover density maps for the Tran Forestry, Bulgaria.

The second type of services is related with the information which EFA (and similar organizations) needs in case of natural and man made disaster in the forest areas. In the frame of EUFODOS, ReSAC has developed two main disaster related type of products: rapid mapping and detailed damage maps and databases. Although the rapid mapping is already covered by Copernicus through Emergency Response Core Service, the downstream services which ReSAC developed cover more specific needs of the local user and delivers detailed and focused information even for small scale disasters. Both types of products are developed for various disaster types: forest fires, storm breaks, snowfall/snowbreak, insects infestations.

High scale detailed forest damage maps for snowfall/snowbreak (Sredec Forestry) and bark-beetle infestation (Vitosha Forestry) Bulgaria.

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