In a recent study published in Remote Sensing of EnvironmentLandsat science team member James Vogelmann and colleagues have used Landsat data collected between 1988 and 2006 to assess forest changes in New Mexico’s Santa Fe National Forest. Beginning in 1995, they observed gradual spectral property changes of conifer stands in the region which correlated with forest health decline and eventual tree mortality. Field visits indicated the deteriorating forest health in the region was attributable to drought and insect infestation. This study demonstrates the ability of Landsat to provide long-term data on gradual ecosystem changes.

Article reference: 
Vogelmann, J.E., B. Tolk, Z. Zhu (2009). Monitoring forest changes in the southwestern United States using multitemporal Landsat data. Remote Sensing of Environment, Vol. 113, No. 8, pp. 1739–1748.