Vegetation recovery monitoring at landslides caused by hurricane mitch in honduras, central America

M. C. Valdez, C. F. Chen, N. T. Son, L. Y. Chang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

The arrival of Hurricane Mitch in Honduras in 1998 produced damages that were unprecedented in their wide-spread nature throughout the country. Estimations indicate that landslides damaged 70% of the road network in Honduras and nearly 1,000 fatalities. Abundant vegetation and deep roots are helpful to have stable soils and to limit the amount potential of a landslide. In this study we identify landslides after Hurricane Mitch and its vegetation recovery using landsat satellite images. The study area selected was in response to the priorization developed by local authorities. In El Cajon reservoir watershed 5 counties were selected and in Choluteca River watershed 14 counties. Multidate Landsat satellite images acquired previous (1997) and after (1999) the hurricane were pre-processed and used to derive Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). The NDVI images were subtracted and a threshold was assigned to the resultant image to identify change areas. For the thresholding image generated, filtering techniques were applied in order to eliminate undesirable change pixels. When a proper threshold was selected, it was applied to the whole study area to identify landslides. To assess the accuracy of the landslide identification, ground truth was used. The vegetation recovery of these landslides identified was calculated for two periods, 1999-2003 and 2003-2010 in the two selected study areas obtaining a very high recovery for El Cajon reservoir watershed and low recovery for Choluteca river watershed area.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication31st Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2010, ACRS 2010
Pages808-814
Number of pages7
StatePublished - 2010
Event31st Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2010, ACRS 2010 - Hanoi, Viet Nam
Duration: 1 Nov 20105 Nov 2010

Publication series

Name31st Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2010, ACRS 2010
Volume1

Conference

Conference31st Asian Conference on Remote Sensing 2010, ACRS 2010
Country/TerritoryViet Nam
CityHanoi
Period1/11/105/11/10

Keywords

  • Landslides
  • NDVI
  • Vegetation recovery

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