How Interpine helped Pan Pac Forest Products save time and improve the accuracy of harvest reports with high-frequency Planet imagery. Click here to download PDF version of the full case study.
MONITORING THE FOREST HARVESTING FROM SPACE
Led by consultation from Interpine, Pan Pac automated the collection and reporting on clearfell areas by using high frequency, 3.7 meter PlanetScope imagery. This resulted in significant time and cost savings for their team, streamlined workflows for end of month and year-end reporting, and improved data accuracy.
Pan Pac needs to accurately map clearfell areas at the end of each month throughout their 35,000 ha estate in a timely fashion and with minimal errors for their monthly reports. Their team of harvest coordinators spent collectively upwards of six days each month traveling to different harvesting sites, doing the markup manually, before bringing the data back into their GIS system for mapping. This manual process was time-consuming, led to clearfell areas being poorly measured or missed entirely, which had downstream effects on yield reconciliation and woodflow projections. Inaccuracies in area reporting, yield reconciliation, harvest
scheduling, and financial forecasting hampered Pan Pac’s Forest Division from having a data-driven understanding of their business.
SEEING THE FOREST AND THE TREES IN NEAR-REAL TIME
Interpine worked closely with Pan Pac to select high-frequency PlanetScope imagery to expedite and improve mapping of clearfell areas on a monthly basis and without time-intensive ground surveys. Harvest coordinators can leverage PlanetScope imagery, accessed via Planet Explorer, to monitor activities across the entire forest estate. The time required each month by the harvest coordinators has been reduced to 30 minutes in the office to validate the clearfell areas produced by the GIS technician.
The high frequency of PlanetScope imagery collection means that Pan Pac has a reliable understanding of recent activity, while the high resolution (3.7 m) means that they can distinguish harvest boundaries with greater precision than field surveys. By comparing the cutover areas against the harvest plan, Pan Pac can quickly identify and reconcile discrepancies.
AN INNOVATIVE APPROACH TO A LONGSTANDING CHALLENGE
Using PlanetScope imagery for cutover mapping, Interpine helped Pan Pac bring fresh, data-driven approaches to their forest division.
- Significant Time Savings > Significant time was saved by the harvest coordinators that could be utilized for more productive task. The overall collection of data, analysis, and reporting timeline was reduced from 1 week to <1 day.
- Higher Accuracy Monthly and Year-End Inventory Reports > 5% reduction in error
- Cost Savings > Affordable, scalable solution when compared to UAV and aerial photography
- Greater Contextual Information about their Forests > For example, assessing storm and wildfire impacts
“Pan Pac has found Planet to be an absolute game changer in the way we do things. It has been beneficial for health and safety of staff as well as the use of staff time. It will be even better once we can access the SkySat (50 cm imagery) more freely.” Sue Stone, GIS Technician, Pan Pac
THE CLIENT: PAN PAC FOREST PRODUCTS
Pan Pac Forest Products is a fully integrated forestry and forest products company, located in Whirinaki, Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand. Pan Pac Forest Division manages 35,000 hectares of forest, from planting through to harvesting, transport, and marketing the logs. It also provides harvesting and marketing services to private forest owners in the region and has 18 full-time harvest crews. Each year Pan Pac produces 1.0 million tonnes from its harvest operations and another 0.5 million tonnes of logs are purchased for its Sawmill and Pulpmill manufacturing plants. Pan Pac Lumber production 500,000 cubic meters Pan Pac Pulp production 280,000 Air Dried Tonnes.