Earth Cover Classification Standard

Document number

not applicable

Maintenance authority

not applicable


The purpose of the Earth Cover Classification Standard (ECCS) is to facilitate the production and exchange of earth cover digital data.    The standard will define common terminology and will be applicable over extensive areas and at a range of scales.  Application of the ECCS will be repeatable and consistent and will be compatible,      where possible, with other earth cover/land cover classification      systems. 


The ECCS will identify the classification categories for earth cover data. The ECCS categories will encompassd 100% of the earth's surface and, in orientation, will look down upon the earth. The ECWG will coordinate with the Federal Geographic Data Committee FGDC) 
Subcommittees to refine the categories.  Vegetation, water, snow, ice, human constructions, bare soil, sand and exposed rocks qualify as cover surfaces. 

Land use classifications will NOT be developed.  Detailed identification will not be developed for cover categories such as vegetation, soil, transportation, wetlands and cultural features because they are being addressed by other FGDC subcommittees or are already provided by the FGDC's "Vegetation Classification standard." 

Sponsored by

Earth Cover Working Group (inactive)

Project history

DocumentVersionDate Custodian
Proposal  1999-09-13
FGDC Standards Working Group