Modis time series for irrigated-area mapping in hydrographic basins of the Brazilian Northeastern region

Abstract: The objective of this work was to evaluate the applicability of time series of the enhanced vegetation index (EVI), from the moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (Modis), in the mapping of irrigated areas in the Northeastern region of Brazil. Annual time series from 2006 to 2015 were classified with the iterative self-organizing data analysis technique (Isodata) algorithm, generating a binary map of irrigated and nonirrigated areas for each year. In the Sertão region, the classification showed an average kappa coefficient of 0.66, underestimating the irrigated area by 7.6%, compared with data of the 2006 agricultural census. In regions more humid than the Sertão, such as Agreste and Zona da Mata Nordestina, the methodology showed limitations to distinguish irrigated areas from natural vegetation, presenting average kappa coefficients of 0.26 and 0.00, respectively. The EVI time series from Modis are applicable for the mapping of irrigated areas in the Sertão of the Northeastern region of Brazil.