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1 November 2011 Remote Sensing Change Detection and Process Analysis of Long-Term Land use Change and Human Impacts
Qiming Zhou, Baolin Li, Yumin Chen
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This study investigates environmental change over a 30-year period and attempts to gain a better understanding of human impacts on an arid environment and their consequences for regional development. Multitemporal remotely sensed imagery was acquired and integrated to establish the basis for change detection and process analysis. Land cover changes were investigated in two categories, namely categorical change using image classification and quantitative change using a vegetation index. The results show that human-induced land cover changes have been minor in this remote area. However, the pace of growth of human-induced change has been accelerating since the early 1990s. The analysis of the multi-temporal vegetation index also shows no overall trend of rangeland deterioration, although local change of vegetation cover caused by human activities was noticeable. The results suggest that the current trend of rapid growth may not be sustainable and that the implementation of effective counter-measures for environmentally sound development is a rather urgent matter.

© Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences 2011
Qiming Zhou, Baolin Li, and Yumin Chen "Remote Sensing Change Detection and Process Analysis of Long-Term Land use Change and Human Impacts," AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment 40(7), 807-818, (1 November 2011).
Received: 3 February 2010; Accepted: 4 May 2011; Published: 1 November 2011

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arid zone
change detection
Human impact assessment
land use change
remote sensing
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