Webinar - Developing Alberta's Next Generation of Wetland Inventories through the DUC-ABMI Partnership

Michael Merchant
Lyle Boychuk
Resource Date:

The Government of Alberta’s current wetland inventory is a publicly available, generalized dataset collated from the best available spatial wetland data across the province. The Alberta Merged Wetland Inventory (AMWI) is an assemblage of inventories derived from various remote sensing technologies, compiled from a range of imagery sources and acquisition dates, and following a variety of classification standards. As a result, the AMWI varies in quality, accuracy, and consistency, and thus an update to the AMWI is required. Fortunately, in recent years advancements in remote sensing technology and Earth observation data have permitted encouraging improvements in wetland mapping capabilities and efficiencies. In parallel with technical advancements, the province recently published the Alberta wetland mapping standards and guidelines: mapping wetlands at an inventory scale, Version 1.0. The standard provides a benchmark to evaluate the efficacy of emerging methodologies to efficiently and consistently map Alberta’s wetlands. Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) and the Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute (ABMI) have been at the forefront of this emerging technology by developing innovative mapping methodologies. Thus, DUC and ABMI have recently partnered with Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP), with the intent of leveraging each organization’s complimentary expertise in remote sensing, mapping, and wetland knowledge. Collectively pooling these knowledge sources will allow for the development of the next generation of provincial wetland inventories that are accurate, timely, cost-effective, and scalable. In this webinar, Michael Merchant and Lyle Boychuk will detail the on-going efforts of this long-term partnership which has an overall goal of updating and spatially inventorying Alberta’s wetlands, a necessary task to support legislation and policy development. Moreover, this webinar will overview the technical mapping methodologies currently in development, which exploit satellite imaging technologies, artificial intelligence, and cloud computing resources.