Landuse/ Land cover Analysis in Hamal Watershed of North western Himalaya's using Remote Sensing & GIS release_76ezqtpvengxli7zcwvbtq4jim

by Mifta Shafiq, Abaas Mir, Pervez Ahmed, Parvaiz Bhat

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The structure, functions and dynamics of most landscapes across the world are mainly determined by their land use and land cover. Mapping land use/ land cover changes at regional scale is essential for wide range of applications, including landslides, erosion, land planning, global warming etc. Rapid and extensive modifications of land use/ land cover due to accelerated human activities have largely resulted into changes which have wider ramifications due to the sensitiveness of these fragile ecosystems of mountainous areas. The study area is environmentally fragile region facing tremendous and undue pressure on its natural resources. Watershed as a resource region clearly reveals the impact of developmental activities. The watershed is therefore an ideal spatial management unit for analyzing land dynamics as well as integrated development of natural resources potentialities of these sensitive systems. Remote Sensing satellite IRS P6 LISS III (2012) data have been used in this study along with information collected from the field for preparing the land use / land cover classes. Suitable ground control points were selected for ground truthing and validation of data. Varied land use/ land cover classes were identified ranging from moderate to dense forests to orchards to snow cover. An important element of this research paper has been advanced and improved data products and data collection systems. The thrust of the present research in mountainous areas revolve around better understanding of land use/land cover analysis and suitable resource management in the Hamal Watershed of Kashmir.
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