Collect Earth (old)

Augmented Visual Interpretation for Land Monitoring

What is Collect Earth?

Collect Earth is a tool that enables data collection through Google Earth. In conjunction with Google Earth, Bing Maps and Google Earth Engine, users can analyze high and very high resolution satellite imagery for a wide variety of purposes, including:

  • Support multi-phase National Forest Inventories
  • Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) assessments
  • Monitoring agricultural land and urban areas
  • Validation of existing maps
  • Collection of spatially explicit socio-economic data
  • Quantifying deforestation, reforestation and desertification

Its user friendliness and smooth learning curve make it a perfect tool for performing fast, accurate and cost-effective assessments. It is highly customizable for the specific data collection needs and methodologies.

The data gathered through Collect Earth is exportable to commonly used formats and can also be exported to Saiku, a tool that facilitates data analysis.

You can find more information in the paper “Collect Earth: Land Use and Land Cover Assessment through Augmented Visual Interpretation” Remote Sens. 20168(10),807;

Download Collect Earth

Latest version : 1.21.0 (11/9/2023)

Collect Earth requires Google Earth Pro and Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.

Collect Earth survey examples

Collect Earth is installed with a demo survey that is used by default. These are other Collect Earth Project (*.cep) files that can be used as examples or stepping stones for new surveys.


Generate Collect Earth grids through Google Earth Engine

Generating the grid files used in the Collect Earth project can be challenging.
With this Google Earth Engine tool you can generate the grids directly, whether using a shapefile or country /province/district boundaries.

Collect Earth System Overview


Collect Earth version for IPCC consistent land representation

Through a collaboration with the IPCC Task Force on National GHG Inventories, a dedicated version of the Collect Earth survey has been produced. This survey allows any user to collect LULUC data based on any sampling design. The LULUC data can be used to generate a consistent land representation following IPCC guidelines on the AFOLU sector.  The activity data are a key element to prepare a national GHG inventory. This CE includes all the necessary attributes to represent a time series of land use and land use changes from the single plot to the aggregate levels. The users may use a special export function to ingest the activity data directly into the IPCC Software for National GHG Inventory. 

This template is available in the Survey Designer of Open Foris Collect and allows a data manager to adapt the data collected to the national circumstances as well as to adapt any type of sampling design strategy.



Consistent land representation for LULUCF GHG inventory

Developing a greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory for the LULUCF sector is inherently associated with complexity and methodological difficulties. The ability to appropriately identify and classify land use and land-use changes is a key prerequisite for developing an inventory in line with the principles of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This paper presents a methodological framework for using Collect Earth to prepare land area data that are complete, consistent, accurate, transparent and comparable, in accordance with the IPCC Guidelines.


Collect Earth is open source. It’s hosted, developed, and maintained on GitHub.