The Effect of Land Use Changes on Desertification Hazard (Case Study: Maraveh Tappeh Region of Golestan Province, Iran)

  •  Asghar Farajollahi    
  •  Hamid Reza Asgari    
  •  Majid Ownagh    
  •  Mohammad Reza Mahboubi    
  •  Abdolrasoul Salman Mahini    


Land degradation and desertification caused by land use change is mainly due to human activities in arid and semi-arid and affect on the sustainable use of lands. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of land use changes on the desertification hazard in Maraveh Tappeh region. In this research, land use maps of 1986, 2000 and 2014 is provided using images of MSS, ETM and OLI sensors of Landsat satellite and land use map of 2024 is predicted using Markov chain model. According to the results, dense forest area is decreased during study period and with passing time, the area of agricultural land has increased. The results for the time interval of 2014-2028, showed it is possible that will be decreased semi-dense forest and dense rangelands and will be increased other land-use areas according to results of model predictions. In the study years, desertification maps were prepared using ESAs method and with the assumption of fixed all factors other than land use factor. The results showed that there was a lack of desertification as a class in 1986, but this class has been removed in other study years and has been added the area of this class into other classes. The compare of desertification hazard classes and theirs percentage of area in studied time periods showed that critical (C3) and fragile (F3) classes had increasing trend, clearly. The difference between classes since 1986 to 2000 is clearer and more specific and destruction seem clearer.

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