From an Eye in the Sky to Roots on the Ground

How much pulp/lumber/biomass/sugar cane is there on that piece of ground?There are many reasons for asking that question.
Written by Harry Fuller, Contributor

How much pulp/lumber/biomass/sugar cane is there on that piece of ground?

There are many reasons for asking that question. As commodity prices and energy pirces climb, the need for the answers get more urgent. The folks at Lanworth have gathered the global database, experience and software needed to answer that question according to Vice President Shailu Verma.

I spoke recently with Mr.Verma who explained how his firm has developed the database and techniques to accurately predict how much of a particular crop or type of habitat will produice on a particular plot of gournd or over large region. Using complex software modelling and in-depth data of actual harvest and forest yields, Lanworth can calculate what you can expect. Weather, soil types, what plants are involved? Those can be used to calculate how much biomass there might be for making biofuel. What cellulose could be harvested after the trees are cut for lumber? How much corn, wheat, sugar cane or rice can be expected for a certain measure of land?

Lansworth uses crop yield data, satellite imagery and actual boots on the ground to build its database of crop and forest yields which are then correlated to soil, weather, farming conditions, etc. to yield dependable predictability formula.

Verma explained that his firm once worked largely for major landowners or commodity dealers. With a growing concern over climate change, other firms and government agencies are becoming interested in ways to predict what a particular crop or forest yield might be. Verma feels his company is on the verge of a major jump in interest in what once seemd like a specialized area.

Lifted from its website, here's where Lanworth sees it future customers: "Forestry - Our offerings range from strategic timber supply studies, to GIS-based land management systems, to due diligence on land acquisitions, to higher-and-better-use (HBU) analysis. Government - We offer unique remote sensing and GIS services to federal, state, and local government agencies, including land cover analysis and mapping, custom GIS implementations, environmental mapping, and fire risk assessment. Agriculture - Our offerings to domestic and international clients range from micro-regional commodity supply analysis to precision fertilizer targeting analysis using detailed infrared imagery. Real Estate - Forging the way in providing GIS services to this industry, our offerings include site selection, demographic analysis, acquisition and disposition studies, and higher-and-better-use (HBU) analysis. Electricity and Gas - We serve numerous gas and electric utility companies in North America, providing a complete set of GIS and remote sensing services tailored for ROW, land, and asset management. Transportation - We offer unique web-based GIS solutions for optimization in logistics and routing including real-time routing and dispatch optimization and strategic transportation cost analysis."

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