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Reply to Mas et al.: Comment on Gebhardt et al. MAD-MEX: Automatic Wall-to-Wall Land Cover Monitoring for the Mexican REDD-MRV Program Using All Landsat Data. Remote Sens. 2014, 6, 3923–3943
Reply published on 23 June 2016, see Remote Sens. 2016, 8(7), 534.
Open AccessComment

Comment on Gebhardt et al. MAD-MEX: Automatic Wall-to-Wall Land Cover Monitoring for the Mexican REDD-MRV Program Using All Landsat Data. Remote Sens. 2014, 6, 3923–3943

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Centro de Investigaciones en Geografía Ambiental, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Campus Morelia, Antigua Carretera a Pátzcuaro 8701, Col. Ex-Hacienda de San José de La Huerta, C.P. 58190 Morelia, Mexico
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Instituto de Geografía, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Circuito de la Investigación Científica, Ciudad Universitaria, Del. Coyoacán, C.P. 04510 México D.F., Mexico
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Universidad de Guanajuato, Sede Belén, Av. Juárez 77, Zona Centro, C.P. 4500 Guanajuato, Mexico
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El Colegio de la Frontera Sur, Unidad San Cristóbal, Carretera Panamericana y Periférico Sur s/n Barrio María Auxiliadora, C.P. 29290 San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Partha Sarathi Roy, Heiko Balzter and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Remote Sens. 2016, 8(7), 533; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs8070533
Received: 27 May 2015 / Revised: 12 May 2016 / Accepted: 24 May 2016 / Published: 23 June 2016
Gebhardt et al. (2014) presented the Monitoring Activity Data for the Mexican REDD+ program (MAD-MEX), an automatic nation-wide land cover monitoring system for the Mexican REDD+ MRV. Though MAD-MEX represents a valuable first effort toward establishing a national reference emissions level for the implementation of REDD+ in Mexico, in this paper, we argue that this land cover system has important limitations that may prevent it from becoming operational for REDD+ MRV. Specifically, we show that (1) the accuracy assessment of MAD-MEX land cover maps is optimistically biased; (2) the ability of MAD-MEX to monitor land cover change, including deforestation and forest degradation; is poor and (3) the use of an entirely automatic classification approach, such as that followed by MAD-MEX, is highly problematic in the case of a large and heterogeneous country like Mexico. We discuss these limitations and call into question the ability of a land cover monitoring system, such as MAD-MEX, both to elaborate a national reference emissions level and to monitor future forest cover change, as part of a REDD+ MRV system. We provide some insights with the aim of improving the development of nation-wide land cover monitoring systems in Mexico and elsewhere. View Full-Text
Keywords: land cover mapping; accuracy assessment; Landsat; image classification; Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV); Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation plus (REDD+) land cover mapping; accuracy assessment; Landsat; image classification; Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV); Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation plus (REDD+)
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Mas, J.-F.; Couturier, S.; Paneque-Gálvez, J.; Skutsch, M.; Pérez-Vega, A.; Castillo-Santiago, M.A.; Bocco, G. Comment on Gebhardt et al. MAD-MEX: Automatic Wall-to-Wall Land Cover Monitoring for the Mexican REDD-MRV Program Using All Landsat Data. Remote Sens. 2014, 6, 3923–3943. Remote Sens. 2016, 8, 533.

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