Understanding the impacts of human resettlement and projected land use dynamics in Chimanimani district of Zimbabwe

This study tests whether and in what way agricultural expansion drives land cover change in resettled landscapes of Zimbabwe now and in the future. Classified Landsat Thematic Mapper images of 2000, 2009, and Landsat 8 image of 2013 were analyzed, using the widely used Markov modelling framework, to determine land use and land cover changes between the year 2000 and 2013, as well as future land cover dynamics in the area of interest. Specifically, land cover data was used to simulate land cover transitions up to 2050, using Markov chain model. Historic land cover modelling and future spatial predictions revealed increases in cropland accompanied by decreases in plantation and forests. This study concludes that agriculture is a major driver of land cover changes, especially forest cover changes in newly resettled agricultural landscapes.
Source: Physics and Chemistry of the Earth, Parts ABC - Category: Science Source Type: research

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