Land Use and Land Cover Dynamics in Central River Region of the Gambia, West Africa from 1984 to 2017
This study is focused on land use and land cover dynamics observed in Central River Region. It aims to determine the direction and rate of change in land use as a means of assessing the impact of climate change in Central River Region (CRR) of The Gambia. Decadal satellite images were used to measure changes in land use and land cover from 1984 to 2017 using supervised classification. Eight land use and land cover types were identified and mapped in this study namely: Crop lands, Gambia River, Halophytic vegetation, Irrigated crops, Mangrove, Settlement, Shrub/Wood savanna and Wooded savanna. The areas of crop lands, halophytic vegetation and settlement expanded between 1984 and 2017. River Gambia, irrigated crops, mangrove, shrub/wood savanna and wooded savanna areas decreased during the same period. Transition to less savanna was higher than transition to more settlement. In addition, physicochemical parameters were analyzed during the rainy and dry seasons for correlation with climate data. Socioeconomic surveys based on structured questionnaires were also conducted with 70 households in 6 villages in CRR. Land clearing for agriculture, tree cutting for firewood and charcoal, settlement and livestock grazing were mainly cited by the respondents as the main culprit inducing land cover change in CRR. This study shows that deforestation and forest degradation are still in progress despite the implementation of a management plan for a full rotation. We therefore proposed best management practices in order to control the agricultural clearing of land in the region such as agricultural intensification and soil fertility improvement.
Omar Ali Bah,
Mamadou Lamine Ndiaye,
Land Use and Land Cover Dynamics in Central River Region of the Gambia, West Africa from 1984 to 2017, American Journal of Modern Energy.
Vol. 5, No. 2,
2019, pp. 5-18.
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