Assessment of Land-Use and Land-Cover Change in Guangxi, China.
ABSTRACT: It is increasingly acknowledged that land-use and land-cover change has become a key subject that urgently needs to be addressed in the study of global environmental change. In the present study, supported by the long-time-series of land-use and land-cover data from 1990, 2000, and 2017, we used the land-use transition matrix, Markov chain model and Moran's I to derive detailed information of the spatial patterns and temporal variation of the land-use and land-cover change; additionally, we highlight the deforestation/afforestation conversion process during the period of 1990-2017. The results show that a total of 4708 km2 (i.e., 2.0% of the total area) changed in Guangxi from 1990 to 2017, while 418 km2 of woodland has been lost in this region. The woodland lost (deforestation) and woodland gained (afforestation) were collocated with intensive forest practices in the past 27 years. The conversions from woodland to cropland and from woodland to grassland were the dominant processes of deforestation and afforestation, respectively. Steep slope cropland was one of the major conversion patterns of afforestation after 2000. This result is mainly explained by the implementation of the "Grain for Green Program" policy and the large-scale development of eucalyptus plantations. Further efforts should be made to control deforestation in this area. These findings can also be used as a reference in the formulation and implementation of sustainable woodland management policies.
Project description:Land change is a cause and consequence of global environmental change1,2. Changes in land use and land cover considerably alter the Earth's energy balance and biogeochemical cycles, which contributes to climate change and-in turn-affects land surface properties and the provision of ecosystem services1-4. However, quantification of global land change is lacking. Here we analyse 35 years' worth of satellite data and provide a comprehensive record of global land-change dynamics during the period 1982-2016. We show that-contrary to the prevailing view that forest area has declined globally5-tree cover has increased by 2.24 million km2 (+7.1% relative to the 1982 level). This overall net gain is the result of a net loss in the tropics being outweighed by a net gain in the extratropics. Global bare ground cover has decreased by 1.16 million km2 (-3.1%), most notably in agricultural regions in Asia. Of all land changes, 60% are associated with direct human activities and 40% with indirect drivers such as climate change. Land-use change exhibits regional dominance, including tropical deforestation and agricultural expansion, temperate reforestation or afforestation, cropland intensification and urbanization. Consistently across all climate domains, montane systems have gained tree cover and many arid and semi-arid ecosystems have lost vegetation cover. The mapped land changes and the driver attributions reflect a human-dominated Earth system. The dataset we developed may be used to improve the modelling of land-use changes, biogeochemical cycles and vegetation-climate interactions to advance our understanding of global environmental change1-4,6.
Project description:The hydrological response to land cover changes induced by human activities in arid regions has attracted increased research interest in recent decades. The study reported herein assessed the spatial and quantitative changes in surface runoff resulting from land cover change in the Al-Baha region of Saudi Arabia between 1990 and 2000 using an ArcGIS-surface runoff model and predicted land cover and surface runoff depth in 2030 using Markov chain analysis. Land cover maps for 1990 and 2000 were derived from satellite images using ArcGIS 10.1. The findings reveal a 26% decrease in forest and shrubland area, 28% increase in irrigated cropland, 1.5% increase in sparsely vegetated land and 0.5% increase in bare soil between 1990 and 2000. Overall, land cover changes resulted in a significant decrease in runoff depth values in most of the region. The decrease in surface runoff depth ranged from 25-106 mm/year in a 7020-km2 area, whereas the increase in such depth reached only 10 mm/year in a 243-km2 area. A maximum increase of 73 mm/year was seen in a limited area. The surface runoff depth decreased to the greatest extent in the central region of the study area due to the huge transition in land cover classes associated with the construction of 25 rainwater harvesting dams. The land cover prediction revealed a greater than twofold increase in irrigated cropland during the 2000-2030 period, whereas forest and shrubland are anticipated to occupy just 225 km2 of land area by 2030, a significant decrease from the 747 km2 they occupied in 2000. Overall, changes in land cover are predicted to result in an annual increase in irrigated cropland and dramatic decline in forest area in the study area over the next few decades. The increase in surface runoff depth is likely to have significant implications for irrigation activities.
Project description:We examine the dynamics and spatial determinants of land change in India by integrating decadal land cover maps (1985-1995-2005) from a wall-to-wall analysis of Landsat images with spatiotemporal socioeconomic database for ~630,000 villages in India. We reinforce our results through collective evidence from synthesis of 102 case studies that incorporate field knowledge of the causes of land change in India. We focus on cropland-fallow land conversions, and forest area changes (excludes non-forest tree categories including commercial plantations). We show that cropland to fallow conversions are prominently associated with lack of irrigation and capital, male agricultural labor shortage, and fragmentation of land holdings. We find gross forest loss is substantial and increased from ~23,810 km2 (1985-1995) to ~25,770 km2 (1995-2005). The gross forest gain also increased from ~6000 km2 (1985-1995) to ~7440 km2 (1995-2005). Overall, India experienced a net decline in forest by ~18,000 km2 (gross loss-gross gain) consistently during both decades. We show that the major source of forest loss was cropland expansion in areas of low cropland productivity (due to soil degradation and lack of irrigation), followed by industrial development and mining/quarrying activities, and excessive economic dependence of villages on forest resources.
Project description:Land cover change is a dynamic phenomenon driven by synergetic biophysical and socioeconomic effects. It involves massive transitions from natural to less natural habitats and thereby threatens ecosystems and the services they provide. To retain intact ecosystems and reduce land cover change to a minimum of natural transition processes, a dense network of protected areas has been established across Europe. However, even protected areas and in particular the zones around protected areas have been shown to undergo land cover changes. The aim of our study was to compare land cover changes in protected areas, non-protected areas, and 1 km buffer zones around protected areas and analyse their relationship to climatic and socioeconomic factors across Europe between 2000 and 2012 based on earth observation data. We investigated land cover flows describing major change processes: urbanisation, afforestation, deforestation, intensification of agriculture, extensification of agriculture, and formation of water bodies. Based on boosted regression trees, we modelled correlations between land cover flows and climatic and socioeconomic factors. The results show that land cover changes were most frequent in 1 km buffer zones around protected areas (3.0% of all buffer areas affected). Overall, land cover changes within protected areas were less frequent than outside, although they still amounted to 18,800 km2 (1.5% of all protected areas) from 2000 to 2012. In some parts of Europe, urbanisation and intensification of agriculture still accounted for up to 25% of land cover changes within protected areas. Modelling revealed meaningful relationships between land cover changes and a combination of influencing factors. Demographic factors (accessibility to cities and population density) were most important for coarse-scale patterns of land cover changes, whereas fine-scale patterns were most related to longitude (representing the general east/west economic gradient) and latitude (representing the north/south climatic gradient).
Project description:Rapid urbanization is changing the existing patterns of land use land cover (LULC) globally, which is consequently increasing the land surface temperature (LST) in many regions. The present study is focused on estimating current and simulating future LULC and LST trends in the urban environment of Chaoyang District, Beijing. Past patterns of LULC and LST were identified through the maximum likelihood classification (MLC) method and multispectral Landsat satellite images during the 1990-2018 data period. The cellular automata (CA) and stochastic transition matrix of the Markov model were applied to simulate future (2025) LULC and LST changes, respectively, using their past patterns. The CA model was validated for the simulated and estimated LULC for 1990-2018, with an overall Kappa (K) value of 0.83, using validation modules in IDRISI software. Our results indicated that the cumulative changes in built-up to vegetation area were 74.61 km2 (16.08%) and 113.13 km2 (24.38%) from 1990 to 2018. The correlation coefficient of land use and land cover change (LULCC), including vegetation, water bodies and built-up area, had values of r = - 0.155 (p > 0.005), -0.809 (p = 0.000), and 0.519 (p > 0.005), respectively. The results of future analysis revealed that there will be an estimated 164.92 km2 (-12%) decrease in vegetation area, while an expansion of approximately 283.04 km2 (6% change) will occur in built-up areas from 1990 to 2025. This decrease in vegetation cover and expansion of settlements would likely cause a rise of approximately ?10.74 °C and ?12.66 °C in future temperature, which would cause a rise in temperature (2025). The analyses could open an avenue regarding how to manage urban land cover patterns to enhance the resilience of cities to climate warming. This study provides scientific insights for environmental development and sustainability through efficient and effective urban planning and management in Beijing and will also help strengthen other research related to the UHI phenomenon in other parts of the world.
Project description:Energy infrastructures can have negative impacts on the environment. In remote and / or sparsely populated as well as in conflict-prone regions, these can be difficult to assess, in particular when they are of a large scale. Analyzing land use and land cover changes can be an important initial step towards establishing the quantity and quality of impacts. Drawing from very-high-resolution-multi-temporal-satellite-imagery, this paper reports on a study which employed the Random Forest Classifier and Land Change Modeler to derive detailed information of the spatial patterns and temporal variations of land-use and land-cover changes resulting from the China-Myanmar Oil and Gas Pipelines in Ann township in Myanmar's Rakhine State of Myanmar. Deforestation and afforestation conversion processes during pre- and post-construction periods (2010 to 2012) are compared. Whilst substantial forest areas were lost along the pipelines, this is only part of the story, as afforestation has also happened in parallel. However, afforestation areas can be of a lower value, and in order to be able to take quality of forests into account, it is of crucial importance to accompany satellite-imagery based techniques with field observation. Findings have important implications for future infrastructure development projects in conflict-affected regions in Myanmar and elsewhere.
Project description:While we know that deforestation in the tropics is increasingly driven by commercial agriculture, most tropical countries still lack recent and spatially-explicit assessments of the relative importance of pasture and cropland expansion in causing forest loss. Here we present a spatially explicit quantification of the extent to which cultivated land and grassland expanded at the expense of forests across Latin America in 2001-2011, by combining two "state-of-the-art" global datasets (Global Forest Change forest loss and GlobeLand30-2010 land cover). We further evaluate some of the limitations and challenges in doing this. We find that this approach does capture some of the major patterns of land cover following deforestation, with GlobeLand30-2010's Grassland class (which we interpret as pasture) being the most common land cover replacing forests across Latin America. However, our analysis also reveals some major limitations to combining these land cover datasets for quantifying pasture and cropland expansion into forest. First, a simple one-to-one translation between GlobeLand30-2010's Cultivated land and Grassland classes into cropland and pasture respectively, should not be made without caution, as GlobeLand30-2010 defines its Cultivated land to include some pastures. Comparisons with the TerraClass dataset over the Brazilian Amazon and with previous literature indicates that Cultivated land in GlobeLand30-2010 includes notable amounts of pasture and other vegetation (e.g. in Paraguay and the Brazilian Amazon). This further suggests that the approach taken here generally leads to an underestimation (of up to ~60%) of the role of pasture in replacing forest. Second, a large share (~33%) of the Global Forest Change forest loss is found to still be forest according to GlobeLand30-2010 and our analysis suggests that the accuracy of the combined datasets, especially for areas with heterogeneous land cover and/or small-scale forest loss, is still too poor for deriving accurate quantifications of land cover following forest loss.
Project description:Quantifying the dynamics of land use change is critical in tackling global societal challenges such as food security, climate change, and biodiversity loss. Here we analyse the dynamics of global land use change at an unprecedented spatial resolution by combining multiple open data streams (remote sensing, reconstructions and statistics) to create the HIstoric Land Dynamics Assessment + (HILDA +). We estimate that land use change has affected almost a third (32%) of the global land area in just six decades (1960-2019) and, thus, is around four times greater in extent than previously estimated from long-term land change assessments. We also identify geographically diverging land use change processes, with afforestation and cropland abandonment in the Global North and deforestation and agricultural expansion in the South. Here, we show that observed phases of accelerating (~1960-2005) and decelerating (2006-2019) land use change can be explained by the effects of global trade on agricultural production.
Project description:Case studies of land use change have suggested that deforestation across Southern Mexico is accelerating. However, forest transition theory predicts that trajectories of change can be modified by economic factors, leading to spatial and temporal heterogeneity in rates of change that may take the form of the Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC). This study aimed to assess the evidence regarding potential forest transition in Southern Mexico by classifying regional forest cover change using Landsat imagery from 1990 through to 2006. Patterns of forest cover change were found to be complex and non-linear. When rates of forest loss were averaged over 342 municipalities using mixed-effects modelling the results showed a significant (p<0.001) overall reduction of the mean rate of forest loss from 0.85% per year in the 1990-2000 period to 0.67% in the 2000-2006 period. The overall regional annual rate of deforestation has fallen from 0.33% to 0.28% from the 1990s to 2000s. A high proportion of the spatial variability in forest cover change cannot be explained statistically. However analysis using spline based general additive models detected underlying relationships between forest cover and income or population density of a form consistent with the EKC. The incipient forest transition has not, as yet, resulted in widespread reforestation. Forest recovery remains below 0.20% per year. Reforestation is mostly the result of passive processes associated with reductions in the intensity of land use. Deforestation continues to occur at high rates in some focal areas. A transition could be accelerated if there were a broader recognition among policy makers that the regional rate of forest loss has now begun to fall. The changing trajectory provides an opportunity to actively restore forest cover through stimulating afforestation and stimulating more sustainable land use practices. The results have clear implications for policy aimed at carbon sequestration through reducing deforestation and enhancing forest growth.
Project description:An analysis of land cover changes (LCCs) was done in Image Forest Reserve (IFR) from August to October 2019. Free satellite images for 1990, 2004, and 2018 were downloaded from Landsat 5 (TM) and Landsat 8 (OLI) available through the USGS portal. Ground surveys were conducted using systematically set plots of 20?m?×?40?m to identify the existing land cover types and human illegal activities. Geographical coordinates for each of these plots were recorded using handheld GPS. We witnessed the changes of land cover types in the three decades. Forest had contracted, while shrubland and grassland and woodland had expanded within IFR. Between 1990 and 2004, woodland, bareland and rocky outcrops, shrubland, and grassland had consistently decreased though at a different rate of change, while forest has increased between the same assessment periods. The period of 2004-2018 has shown a consistent increase at different rates in woodland, bareland and rocky outcrops, shrubland, and grassland at a different rate of change, while forest has decreased between the same assessment periods. Further study is needed, bylaws and laws should be implemented, participatory forest management should be encouraged, beekeeping and ecotourism should be introduced, provision of regular education to the community by the Tanzania Forest Service (TFS) should be encouraged, and awareness creation should be made.