Minneapolis, USA, October 9, 2007: East View Cartographic (EVC) announced the completion of a project to create 30 meter resolution Digital Elevation Models (DEM) of protected Afghanistan habitat. In addition to DEM creation, EVC tasked the Quickbird satellite to collect high-resolution satellite imagery over the Band-e Amir lakes and Ajar Valley regions of Afghanistan to aid the Wildlife Conservation Society in assessing wildlife populations, rangeland conditions, impacts of farmland expansion and over-grazing.
In the past five years EVC has completed many custom geospatial projects involving Afghanistan, ranging from original large-scale topographic map production for NATO forces to terrain analysis studies to massive raster data projects supporting the next Afghanistan population census.
Under the project, EVC derived the DEM data from large-scale topographic maps, and then used the DEM data to orthorectify the imagery to further increase spatial accuracy. The project areas covered approximately 1750 square kilometres over north-central Afghanistan. Imagery collected by the Quickbird satellite was further processed by East View Cartographic and delivered in numerous spectral band combinations to allow for additional analysis of vegetation, hydrography, and human impacts in the area.
East View Cartographic maintains one of the world’s largest commercially available collections of authoritative maps covering Afghanistan and many other countries around the world.
In Afghanistan, WCS is implementing the Afghanistan Biodiversity Conservation Project, a three year project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The project focuses specifically on wildlife surveys and monitoring, training and capacity building, policy development and community conservation. WCS is the only biodiversity conservation project doing wildlife surveys in the country, and has trained many members of the Afghan government and university graduates in field survey methodologies, park management, ecology, natural resource management and conservation policy. WCS is working with the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan’s National Environmental Protection Agency and Ministry of Agriculture, as well as international stakeholders and local communities to create Afghanistan’s first national park at Band-e-Amir, as well as working toward the creation of National Parks and Protected Areas other parts of the country.