afford less frequent coverage at 30-m spatial resolution in eight spectral bands optimized for vegetation and land. Large-scale change detected through VIIRS can be more closely evaluated, studied, and analyzed using OLI. Furthermore, VIIRS will provide data in spectral bands that can be used to atmospherically correct OLI, while OLI can be used to better calibrate VIIRS to validate climate and environmental data records derived from VIIRS. VIIRS will track dynamic Earth processes such as snow accumulation and melt-back, vegetation green-up and senescence, and fires on an interannual basis. OLI will focus on detailed land cover change, disturbance, and recovery, discerning the forces of change, and discriminating between natural and man-made causes, allowing us to predict key consequences and provide meaningful policy advice. Moreover, VIIRS and OLI synergy has been demonstrated by formation flying of the EOS Terra and Landsat 7 satellites. Terra MODIS and Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper plus (ETM+) have proven VIIRS and OLI synergy and demonstrated the future of NPOESS to meet the complete NOAA vision.
NOAA needs to address the need to organize a multidisciplinary team to develop a land, vegetation, and agriculture product set for land management agencies and agricultural applications and for the ecological sciences. NOAA should convene an intergovernmental committee with NASA, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Department of the Interior, the EPA, and other interested parties to select operational land vegetation variables for generation from NPOESS, GOES, and other operational systems that will have high utility for land management. Only with direct and ongoing interaction with the land management agencies can the optimum mix of variables, time and space resolutions, variable units, data formats, distribution pipe-lines, and related details be determined. The land management agencies need to dedicate personnel and resources on their end to optimize reception and use of these data sets. The continuous and comprehensive monitoring provided by satellites of the millions of square kilometers of publicly managed land is not available in any other way.