Assessment of biomass and carbon of mangroves in West Africa: USAID Final Report

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In this project, we conduct GIS-based data processing and spatial analysis to evaluate the coverage, canopy height, biomass, and carbon of mangroves in West Africa. We first introduce study area, covering 9 countries in West Africa. We then conduct literature review on the existing work of mangrove study regarding coverage, canopy height and biomass. In Section 4, we report how we process and analyze mangrove data in the study area. The coverage of mangroves is estimated using data from NASA and USGS and relevant comparison given. Canopy heights of mangroves are derived from NASA dataset and classified into five classes to facilitate further analysis. Aboveground biomass of mangroves is estimated using empirical allometric equation which is a function of canopy height. We estimate the mean above- and belowground biomass of mangroves in our study area at two levels: regional and country. We compare and discuss the estimated mean and total biomass of mangrove forests in our study region. Further, we propose an approach that combines online available data of mangrove coverage and canopy heights to estimate biomass at regional or higher levels (in Section 4.5) and investigate possible anthropogenic impacts on mangrove forests. In the Discussion section, we provide detailed discussion on the area, canopy height, and biomass of mangroves in and across different countries in our study area. In the conclusion section, we summarize findings in this project.

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