Use of Landsat and MODIS data to remotely estimate Russia’s sown area

Kirsten M. de Beurs*, Grigory Ioffe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The intensity of crop management is one of the most important management decisions that affect soil carbon stocks in croplands. In this study, we use satellite data at two spatial resolutions (30 m Landsat and 500 m MODIS) and field observations to determine arable lands in a portion of the Russian grain belt. Once arable lands are established, we map cropping intensity between 2002 and 2009 to get a better understanding of the activity occurring on arable lands. Our arable land estimates compare favourably with the 2006 All-Russia Agricultural Census. We also compare three global data sets that quantify croplands against the census data. Finally, we show that our cropping intensity map compares very well to the available regional statistical data. We reveal that areas in the southern regions of Russia are successfully cropped during fewer years than more centrally located areas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)377-401
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Land Use Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • cropland extent
  • cropland intensity
  • Landsat
  • phenology
  • Russia


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