I use a shapefile with CRS ("+proj=longlat +datum=WGS84 +no_defs +ellps=WGS84 +towgs84=0,0,0"). I want to calculate a buffer around the points with 'extract' from raster package. How can I know the units in this layer? Is it in meters? My idea is to calculate 1X1 km , thus buffer=1000. Is that correct?

try1 <- extract(raster, 
                fun=mean, na.rm=T,
                sp = TRUE, # create spatial object
                buffer = 1000,
  • @GabrielDeLuca's answer is the better way, but for a very very very rough approximation, buffer by 0.01. (your units are decimal degrees, 1 deg ~ 111km at the equator)
    – user2856
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 23:46

1 Answer 1


+proj=longlat is in angular units, degrees by default.

Better if you can project your dataset before, to a conformal projection (to preserve the circular buffer shape) appropriate for your work area (so that the distance deforms as little as possible).

  • Thank you! @GabrielDeLuca Can you advise how to re-project my raster and the points? witch CRS would be suitable to United States?
    – Alina
    Commented Feb 8, 2019 at 15:28
  • @Alina, I know how to reproject in QGIS, but are you working in R? Also, from the console, with ogr2ogr for the points and gdalwarp for the raster. United States is a large area, and it's not easy to preserve shapes and distances in larges areas. Is your work area the whole country or can it be a smaller area? I'm used to projecting in transverse mercator, tangential to an internal point of the work area, but I usually work with smaller surfaces. Commented Feb 8, 2019 at 17:16

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