Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Thematic accuracy of the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) 2001 land cover for Alaska

January 1, 2011

The National Land Cover Database (NLCD) 2001 Alaska land cover classification is the first 30-m resolution land cover product available covering the entire state of Alaska. The accuracy assessment of the NLCD 2001 Alaska land cover classification employed a geographically stratified three-stage sampling design to select the reference sample of pixels. Reference land cover class labels were determined via fixed wing aircraft, as the high resolution imagery used for determining the reference land cover classification in the conterminous U.S. was not available for most of Alaska. Overall thematic accuracy for the Alaska NLCD was 76.2% (s.e. 2.8%) at Level II (12 classes evaluated) and 83.9% (s.e. 2.1%) at Level I (6 classes evaluated) when agreement was defined as a match between the map class and either the primary or alternate reference class label. When agreement was defined as a match between the map class and primary reference label only, overall accuracy was 59.4% at Level II and 69.3% at Level I. The majority of classification errors occurred at Level I of the classification hierarchy (i.e., misclassifications were generally to a different Level I class, not to a Level II class within the same Level I class). Classification accuracy was higher for more abundant land cover classes and for pixels located in the interior of homogeneous land cover patches.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2011
Title Thematic accuracy of the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) 2001 land cover for Alaska
DOI 10.1016/j.rse.2011.01.020
Authors David J. Selkowitz, S.V. Stehman
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Remote Sensing of Environment
Series Number
Index ID 70036257
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Alaska Science Center