Search the GFW help center
Last updated September 16th 2020

Global Forest Watch Help Center

https://www.globalforestwatch.org/help

Adjust map and data settings

GFW offers several ways to customize the map view as well as the data you are viewing. Below are steps on how to adjust map and data layer settings.

Data layer settings

  • Learn more about the data you are viewing. Click the information “i” icon to the right of the data layer find the source, research methodology, time period available and other important details about the data layer. This will activate a pop-up window with more information and links to download.
The pop-up window for tree cover loss was activated by clicking the information “i” icon.
  • Add and remove data layers. You can customize which data layers you want to view on the map. To add a data layer to the map, click on a category on the left side of the map and activate the data layer you want to view. Remove data layers in the same way, or by clicking the remove layer “x” icon next to the data layer on the legend. A green circle with a number will indicate how many data layers you have activated in each category.
Biodiversity intactness was activated, with a green circle over “Biodiversity” indicating that one biodiversity layer is activated.
  • Add and remove information specific to a data layer. Certain data layers may have additional components that you can activate in the same way you activated the data layer itself. These components can be found underneath the data layer on the legend.
“Geographic coverage” is activated for the deforestation alerts, indicating their coverage.
  • Adjust canopy density. Some data layers, such as the tree cover and tree cover loss data, offer the ability to adjust the minimum percent canopy density used to define “tree cover.” It is important to be able to adjust the tree cover canopy density according to different user or country definitions of “forest,” as there is no global consensus on how much tree cover is needed to constitute a forest.
The default tree cover canopy density for the tree cover and tree cover loss data is >30%.
  • Adjust opacity for a data layer. When overlaying a data layer over satellite imagery or a basemap, it can be hard to see what’s beneath the data layer displayed. To make a data layer more transparent, click on the opacity icon next to the data layer on the legend, then click and drag the opacity to your preferred percentage.
The opacity of tree cover loss was lowered to offer a clearer picture of what the basemap displays.
  • Adjust the date range of data being viewed. To view different date ranges for data layers that display a time slider, drag and drop the ends of the time slider until they are set for the date range you want to see. This will also apply to any data charts and numbers that populate when you run an analysis. Some data layers offer a calendar to select the date range instead – for these layers, select the start and end date from the calendar.
The time slider was modified to show tree cover loss from 2007 through 2015.
Some data layers, such as the deforestation alerts, offer a calendar to select a date range.
  • Watch forest change data occur over time. Certain forest change data layers, such as tree cover loss, offer the option to animate the change over time. Click on the play icon to the left of the time slider to watch the data change throughout your selected date range.
  • Reorder data layers. When you add a data layer to the map, it will appear at top of the legend in the order you add them. The topmost data layer will appear above other data layers on the map. To reorder data layers, select the drag-and-drop icon to the left of any data layer’s name, and drag and drop it above or below other data layers as you prefer.

Map view settings

  • Zoom in and out on the map. There are several options for zooming in or out on the map. The first is to center the crosshairs in the center of the map over your area of interest then click on the zoom out “-” icon or zoom in “+” icon at the bottom right of the map. The second is to hover your mouse over the area you want to see, then scroll using the scroll wheel on your mouse. To zoom in and out from a mobile device, touch two fingers on the map and draw them apart.
The crosshair was centered over Ghana so that the zoom in “+” icon would zoom in to the country.
  • Expand the map view. If you would like to remove the map settings tools from your view of the map, click the show map only icon on the bottom right of the map. Click the icon again to make these options appear as they were before.
The map settings tools were hidden by clicking the show map only icon on the bottom right.
  • Change the basemap you are viewing on the map. When you first come to the map, the basemap will be set to “Default” and political boundaries will be present (as opposed to river basins or terrestrial ecoregions). You can change the basemap by clicking the map settings “Default” icon on the bottom right of the map. Learn more about how to change basemaps and boundary types here.
Print this article
Last updated September 16th 2020

Global Forest Watch Help Center

https://www.globalforestwatch.org/help

Adjust map and data settings

GFW offers several ways to customize the map view as well as the data you are viewing. Below are steps on how to adjust map and data layer settings.

Data layer settings

  • Learn more about the data you are viewing. Click the information “i” icon to the right of the data layer find the source, research methodology, time period available and other important details about the data layer. This will activate a pop-up window with more information and links to download.
The pop-up window for tree cover loss was activated by clicking the information “i” icon.
  • Add and remove data layers. You can customize which data layers you want to view on the map. To add a data layer to the map, click on a category on the left side of the map and activate the data layer you want to view. Remove data layers in the same way, or by clicking the remove layer “x” icon next to the data layer on the legend. A green circle with a number will indicate how many data layers you have activated in each category.
Biodiversity intactness was activated, with a green circle over “Biodiversity” indicating that one biodiversity layer is activated.
  • Add and remove information specific to a data layer. Certain data layers may have additional components that you can activate in the same way you activated the data layer itself. These components can be found underneath the data layer on the legend.
“Geographic coverage” is activated for the deforestation alerts, indicating their coverage.
  • Adjust canopy density. Some data layers, such as the tree cover and tree cover loss data, offer the ability to adjust the minimum percent canopy density used to define “tree cover.” It is important to be able to adjust the tree cover canopy density according to different user or country definitions of “forest,” as there is no global consensus on how much tree cover is needed to constitute a forest.
The default tree cover canopy density for the tree cover and tree cover loss data is >30%.
  • Adjust opacity for a data layer. When overlaying a data layer over satellite imagery or a basemap, it can be hard to see what’s beneath the data layer displayed. To make a data layer more transparent, click on the opacity icon next to the data layer on the legend, then click and drag the opacity to your preferred percentage.
The opacity of tree cover loss was lowered to offer a clearer picture of what the basemap displays.
  • Adjust the date range of data being viewed. To view different date ranges for data layers that display a time slider, drag and drop the ends of the time slider until they are set for the date range you want to see. This will also apply to any data charts and numbers that populate when you run an analysis. Some data layers offer a calendar to select the date range instead – for these layers, select the start and end date from the calendar.
The time slider was modified to show tree cover loss from 2007 through 2015.
Some data layers, such as the deforestation alerts, offer a calendar to select a date range.
  • Watch forest change data occur over time. Certain forest change data layers, such as tree cover loss, offer the option to animate the change over time. Click on the play icon to the left of the time slider to watch the data change throughout your selected date range.
  • Reorder data layers. When you add a data layer to the map, it will appear at top of the legend in the order you add them. The topmost data layer will appear above other data layers on the map. To reorder data layers, select the drag-and-drop icon to the left of any data layer’s name, and drag and drop it above or below other data layers as you prefer.

Map view settings

  • Zoom in and out on the map. There are several options for zooming in or out on the map. The first is to center the crosshairs in the center of the map over your area of interest then click on the zoom out “-” icon or zoom in “+” icon at the bottom right of the map. The second is to hover your mouse over the area you want to see, then scroll using the scroll wheel on your mouse. To zoom in and out from a mobile device, touch two fingers on the map and draw them apart.
The crosshair was centered over Ghana so that the zoom in “+” icon would zoom in to the country.
  • Expand the map view. If you would like to remove the map settings tools from your view of the map, click the show map only icon on the bottom right of the map. Click the icon again to make these options appear as they were before.
The map settings tools were hidden by clicking the show map only icon on the bottom right.
  • Change the basemap you are viewing on the map. When you first come to the map, the basemap will be set to “Default” and political boundaries will be present (as opposed to river basins or terrestrial ecoregions). You can change the basemap by clicking the map settings “Default” icon on the bottom right of the map. Learn more about how to change basemaps and boundary types here.
Print this article

Adjust map and data settings

GFW offers several ways to customize the map view as well as the data you are viewing. Below are steps on how to adjust map and data layer settings.

Data layer settings

  • Learn more about the data you are viewing. Click the information “i” icon to the right of the data layer find the source, research methodology, time period available and other important details about the data layer. This will activate a pop-up window with more information and links to download.
The pop-up window for tree cover loss was activated by clicking the information “i” icon.
  • Add and remove data layers. You can customize which data layers you want to view on the map. To add a data layer to the map, click on a category on the left side of the map and activate the data layer you want to view. Remove data layers in the same way, or by clicking the remove layer “x” icon next to the data layer on the legend. A green circle with a number will indicate how many data layers you have activated in each category.
Biodiversity intactness was activated, with a green circle over “Biodiversity” indicating that one biodiversity layer is activated.
  • Add and remove information specific to a data layer. Certain data layers may have additional components that you can activate in the same way you activated the data layer itself. These components can be found underneath the data layer on the legend.
“Geographic coverage” is activated for the deforestation alerts, indicating their coverage.
  • Adjust canopy density. Some data layers, such as the tree cover and tree cover loss data, offer the ability to adjust the minimum percent canopy density used to define “tree cover.” It is important to be able to adjust the tree cover canopy density according to different user or country definitions of “forest,” as there is no global consensus on how much tree cover is needed to constitute a forest.
The default tree cover canopy density for the tree cover and tree cover loss data is >30%.
  • Adjust opacity for a data layer. When overlaying a data layer over satellite imagery or a basemap, it can be hard to see what’s beneath the data layer displayed. To make a data layer more transparent, click on the opacity icon next to the data layer on the legend, then click and drag the opacity to your preferred percentage.
The opacity of tree cover loss was lowered to offer a clearer picture of what the basemap displays.
  • Adjust the date range of data being viewed. To view different date ranges for data layers that display a time slider, drag and drop the ends of the time slider until they are set for the date range you want to see. This will also apply to any data charts and numbers that populate when you run an analysis. Some data layers offer a calendar to select the date range instead – for these layers, select the start and end date from the calendar.
The time slider was modified to show tree cover loss from 2007 through 2015.
Some data layers, such as the deforestation alerts, offer a calendar to select a date range.
  • Watch forest change data occur over time. Certain forest change data layers, such as tree cover loss, offer the option to animate the change over time. Click on the play icon to the left of the time slider to watch the data change throughout your selected date range.
  • Reorder data layers. When you add a data layer to the map, it will appear at top of the legend in the order you add them. The topmost data layer will appear above other data layers on the map. To reorder data layers, select the drag-and-drop icon to the left of any data layer’s name, and drag and drop it above or below other data layers as you prefer.

Map view settings

  • Zoom in and out on the map. There are several options for zooming in or out on the map. The first is to center the crosshairs in the center of the map over your area of interest then click on the zoom out “-” icon or zoom in “+” icon at the bottom right of the map. The second is to hover your mouse over the area you want to see, then scroll using the scroll wheel on your mouse. To zoom in and out from a mobile device, touch two fingers on the map and draw them apart.
The crosshair was centered over Ghana so that the zoom in “+” icon would zoom in to the country.
  • Expand the map view. If you would like to remove the map settings tools from your view of the map, click the show map only icon on the bottom right of the map. Click the icon again to make these options appear as they were before.
The map settings tools were hidden by clicking the show map only icon on the bottom right.
  • Change the basemap you are viewing on the map. When you first come to the map, the basemap will be set to “Default” and political boundaries will be present (as opposed to river basins or terrestrial ecoregions). You can change the basemap by clicking the map settings “Default” icon on the bottom right of the map. Learn more about how to change basemaps and boundary types here.

Related Step-By-Step Instructions