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PhD Dissertation Defense- Ligang Zhang

Integrated Study of Using Planning Tools and Remote Sensing Approaches to Monitor and Assess Wetland Conservation in Nebraska

11:00 am–1:00 pm
Hardin Hall Room: 209
Additional Info: HARH
Zhenghong Tang,
Wetland is one of the most important natural resources which provide human society lots of ecosystem services. Human actions and disturbances have caused critical wetland degradation and losses on earth. The main impact factors, including pollution, biological resources use, natural system modification, agriculture, and aquaculture, are significant reasons for wetland degradation. This study focuses on the wetland conservation efforts in Nebraska. In general, this study assesses the wetland conservation in Nebraska from three aspects: 1) How wetland conservation was integrated into Nebraska’s local planning system; 2) What’s the contemporary status of public-owned saline wetlands in Nebraska; 3) What’s the inundation condition of private-owned conservation easements. The first aspect uses a planning evaluation approach to analyze the most current local comprehensive plans. Findings suggest that local governments need more direct and proactive inputs to improve wetland conservation. The second and third aspects adopt machine learning and Google Earth Engine to classify the Sentinel-2 imageries for Nebraska’s public and private-owned wetlands. Different machine learning models are applied and compared in the study process. This study shows the possibility of an observation approach for long-term continuous monitoring of Nebraska’s eastern saline wetlands and conservation easements lands efficiently and cost-effectively. The research findings also provide solid scientific evidence for conservation decision-making in these saline wetland areas.

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This event originated in School of Natural Resources.