The canopy cover is defined as the fraction of ground covered by green vegetation. This variable represents the horizontal dimension of the vegetation and allows to quantify its spatial extent.

Canopy cover is an essential variable as vegetation extent strongly influences the water, energy and matter fluxes of land surface. Canopy cover is notably very important when evaluating hydrological processes. Indeed, vegetation extent affects the amount of intercepted rainfalls and influences the fraction of bare ground, more sensitive to potential run-off and erosion.

Canopy cover can be estimated by ground measurements (see here) or through satellite/airborne sensors. Its value ranges between 0 and 1, where 0 represents non-vegetated areas and 1 totally covered ground.

Unit: Fraction or percentage

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