New geospatial data projects to shape the future of land use
The Geospatial Commission has launched a series of projects to explore key pressures on land use, such as energy, housing and decarbonization, and how innovative data analytics can support better land-use change decisions. land use.
As part of the National Earth Data Program, the Geospatial Commission organizes regional pilot projects, national roundtables and expert workshops to bring together stakeholders from local and national governments, academia and industry.
Land is a finite resource
Land faces increasing demands for a wide range of economic and environmental purposes, including housing, transport, energy, food production, flood protection, water security and decarbonization. . The scale of land use changes needed to meet these demands is significant. By taking a single element, it is estimated by the Climate Change Committee that 9% of UK farmland will need to be freed up for action to reduce emissions and sequester carbon by 2035 – an area the size of Wales.
To ensure the UK can meet the ambitious net zero and biodiversity targets while ensuring infrastructure and economic growth, measures to manage the trade-offs and increase sustainable land productivity are needed. Recognizing this, the government has announced that a land use framework for england will be released in 2023.
National Land Data Program
Recent advances in spatial data science and the availability of new forms of data offer enormous potential to support spatially targeted land use strategies. By combining data on current land use and constraints with satellite observations and remote sensing technology, it is possible to identify opportunities for multifunctional land management or to model the future impact of different land use choices. lands.
The Geospatial Commission’s National Land Data Program will demonstrate how spatial data can inform land use scenario planning. Through regional pilots and in dialogue with land use stakeholders, the program will explore selected use cases and develop a capacity improvement plan to support land use decision making. lands.
Land Use Dialogues
At the national level, the Land Use Dialogues, a series of roundtables and focused technical workshops, will bring together land use decision makers with modeling practitioners from government, academia and industry. industry around key policy challenges.
The events will aim to explore how better use of spatial data and modeling tools could support strategic and joint decisions on some of the UK’s most pressing land use challenges.
Policy priorities and issues raised during each roundtable will feed into a workshop
involving experts from academia and industry, analysts and government officials. This will focus on data and modeling tools that could help make decisions on how best to balance land needed with UK policy priorities.
The first roundtable, held on November 1, 2022, discussed options for the UK’s long-term energy security. Subsequent roundtables will look at other issues such as housing, infrastructure and the environment.
We work with regional partners to develop an understanding of how spatial data can inform local and regional land use strategy.
In Devon and Cambridgeshire, we work with the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission and the British Geological Survey to support the design and development of a local land use framework. We are investing in the design and prototyping of a spatial modeling decision support tool to help articulate the impacts of different land use change scenarios on local actors. By improving the way spatial data can be made accessible and visualized, local decision makers can more confidently assess their land use choices.
In Northern Ireland, we are working with Ordnance Survey Northern Ireland to produce an authoritative land cover and land use map from Derry and Strabane District Council, which uses Earth observation data to fill in the gaps classification. By improving our understanding of current land use, we can make more informed decisions about how to best optimize land.