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Land Cover Classification System (LCCS)

The Land Cover Classification System (LCCS), developed by FAO and employed in the generation of the regional land cover maps, is a comprehensive, standardized a priori classification system that enables comparison and correlation of land cover classes regardless of mapping scale, land cover type, data collection method or geographical location. LCCS's inherent flexibility, its applicability in all climatic zones and environmental conditions, and in particular, its built-in compatibility with other classification systems, makes this system of classification ideal for national land cover mapping and comparison with previously generated land cover datasets

In the LCCS approach, a given land cover is defined by a combination of a set of independent diagnostic attributes, called classifiers. The increase in detail in the description of a land cover feature is linked to the increase in the number of classifiers used. In other words, the more classifiers incorporated, the more detailed is the class. The class boundary is then defined either by the different amount of classifiers or by the presence of one or more different types of classifiers. Thus emphasis is no longer on the class name, but on the set of classifiers used to define the class.

The Land Cover Classification System has two main phases:

  • The initial Dichotomous Phase in which the major land cover types are defined.
  • The subsequent Modular-Hierarchical Phase in which the land cover classes are created.
lccs manual

For more information regarding the Land Cover Classification System please refer to the LCCS Classification Concepts & User Manual available at the Global Land Cover Network website.

Its output is a comprehensive land cover characterization, regardless of mapping scale, land cover type, data collection method or geographic location. The use of LCCS in the development of the Afghanistan land cover database ensures the compatibility with other similar datasets created with the same methodology.

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Sep 2, 2015 - A new amendment (no. 3) was signed by USDA and FAO to formalize a no-cost extension of the project GCP/PAK/125/USA from Oct 1, 2015 to Sep 30, 2016.

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