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At a time when awareness of the role of tropical forests in carbon storage, climate change mitigation, and biodiversity has dramatically increased, the Department of Global Ecology at the Carnegie Institution seeks to rapidly advance the science of mapping forests, to support internationally policy discussions, and to respond with applied solutions that address on-the-ground needs for forest monitoring.


The Carnegie Landsat Analysis System – Lite (CLASlite) is a software package designed for highly automated identification of deforestation and forest degradation from remotely sensed satellite imagery. Developed by Greg Asner and his team at the Carnegie Institution, CLASlite incorporates state-of-the-art research in remote sensing into a simple, user-friendly yet powerful tool for non-profit institutions and governments in need of technologies for forest monitoring and environmental planning.



“CLASlite is very simple to use; any person, regardless of his or her expertise in the subject, can use it to generate completely reliable results.  In addition to its simplicity, it's a free tool." —Gustavo Galindo, Colombia



The CLASlite team’s latest effort has expanded its software capabilities, and is capacity building for regional- and national-level forest monitoring. The team is disseminating its technology through a tailored, demand-driven transference of CLASlite to government, academic and non-government (non-commercial) institutions of the Andes and Guiana Shield regions.