Upkeep - Manifest changes

From Wikicap - European Commission


Manifest change

Changes that cannot be attributed to the life-cycle dynamics of the land but are clearly due to appearance or dissappearance of physical feature are called "manifest changes". Manifest changes require an intervention into the database.

The EC services consider four generic cases of manifest change:

  • type I: irreversible conversion of agricultural land covers inside reference parcel into a land cover ineligible for activation of SPS entitlements (2009R73 art34) or into land covers other than utilised agricultural area (2009R73 art 124), respectively for SPS and SAPS schemes.
  1. combined patches, individually distinguishable, on the border of the reference parcel that are in average more than 5 meters wide and measure more than 100m2.
  2. combined patches completely inside the perimeter (“inclusions”) that are well delineated and cover 1000m2 or more. Given the higher resolution of imagery available to date, JRC recommends to bring into upkeep, insofar scale permits, any well bordered patch larger than 500m2 and so help prevent conflicting OTSC measurements.
  • type II: the appearance of permanent constructions, regardless of their width and size, on the RP
  1. a building or processing facility (see example 1)
  2. a road or other artificial surface pavement (e.g. concrete floor)
  3. Any other man-made structure that remains more than three years onsite that changes the land cover or soil condition in a way that normal agriculture activities cannot be carried out without significant investment or action (e.g. pylons, storage structures, dumpsters,silos, dung piles…). Even if more than three years may be difficult to assess, detection of a feature on two consecutive images would provide a alternative indication of its permanent character.
Note: unpaved ground works and planting are considered land conversion and not construction activities.
  • type III: Any change in the perimeter of RP that causes agricultural land to be exchanged between at least two former reference parcels or allocates previously united land to at least 2 new reference parcels.
  1. Splitting of a parcel into two or more
  2. Merger of two or more parcels into one
  3. Mutual exchange of land between two or more parcels
  • type IV: Any change in the perimeter of a single reference parcel that causes new agricultural land to be added to that reference parcel.
  1. Parcels extruding into land that was previously outside IACS


  1. one physical change can cause several manifest changes: i.e. a newly constructed road can easily split a parcel in two.
  2. "conversion of land cover" is determined by applying the characteritics referred to in the eligibilty profile.
  3. In what follows, the term boundary can relate to either of two concepts introduced above.
  1. on the "border" relates to the land cover / eligibility component of LPIS as land conversion is concerned;
  2. at the "perimeter" relates to the land identification / tenure component (production block perimeter, topographic block lines, cadastral parcel) if exchange of land is concerned.
In pure production block design, both concepts coincide, but other design types can and must differentiate the concepts appropriately.

Properties and consequences of manifest changes by type

The type of manifest change will, to a large extend, determine the further processing.

  1. Type I and III changes require an investigation on the need to input of an "new" reference area value in the concerned reference parcels. Type II changes need an new reference area by default.
  2. Some changes will need a change of the spatial (vector) information, either to establish the new reference area value or to demonstrate that this particular anomaly has been accommodated for. Type III changes always need a modification in the common boundary.
  3. The requirement to uniquely identify land, entails that type III changes require a new Reference parcel (with its new unique identification) to be created.

The table below gives an overview of the manifest changes and their direct effects.

Change min area min dimension new parcel? new reference area? new survey? comment
Land conversion at RP border 0.01 ha 5m very rare if significant affected border
Land conversion of inclusions 0.05 ha n/a rare if significant affected inclusion
New building n/a n/a unlikely always when possible
New road surface n/a n/a possibly always when possible
Other infrastructure n/a n/a unlikely always delayed 3 years control
Split RP 0.01ha n/a always if significant common boundary
Merged RP n/a n/a always if significant (sum) No
Exchange between RP 0.01ha n/a always if significant common boundary
RP extrusion 0.01ha n/a always if significant affected boundary

Each type of manifest change is clarified and illustrated in a separate article

Detecting manifest changes to the reference parcel

Manifest changes through land conversion at the border of the reference parcels come with both a specified MMU and minimum dimension. Those inside the parcel have only their MMU specified. But on these borders one can also expect to observe some typical landscape dynamics phenomena as well as technical artifacts as image shifts or changes in cropping pattern. How can one easily distinguish a true conversion of land from an innocent artifact?

It would not be practical if one has to delineate all land ever declared under each anomaly to confirm if a manifest change has truly occurred. Rather, JRC proposes a simple two tier methodology, based on visual inspection

On the other hand, when certain changes have been reported but that report is in fact a "false alarm", there should be a way to demonstrate no further action is needed. In such cases, the subsequent congruence test enables the LPIS custodian to vindicate the reported anomaly.

Pending on the outcome of these combined tests, each observed land change anomaly can either

  • be recorded as irrelevant without further processing
  • be subject to processing by the upkeep processes and to recording of transaction results.

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