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doi:10.5194/se-2016-172
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
02 Jan 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Solid Earth (SE).
Assessment and Monitoring of Land Degradation Using Geospatial Technology in Bathinda District, Punjab, India
Naseer Ahmad and Puneeta Pandey Centre for Environmental Sciences and Technology, Central University of Punjab, Bathinda, Punjab-151001, India
Abstract. Land degradation leads to alteration in ecological and economic functions due to decrease in productivity and quality of the land. The aim of the present study was to assess land degradation with the help of geospatial technology – Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographical Information System (GIS)) in Bathinda district, Punjab. The severity of land degradation was estimated by analysing the physico-chemical parameters in the laboratory and correlating them with satellite based studies.The results revealed that the soils in the study area were exposed to the salt intrusion which could be mainly attributed to irrigation practices in the state of Punjab. Most of the soil samples of the study area were largely found slightly or moderately saline with a few salt-free sites. Further, majority of the soil samples were calcareous and a few samples were alkaline or sodic in nature. A comparative analysis of temporal satellite datasets of Landsat-7 ETM+ and Landsat-8 OLI_TIRS of the year 2000 and 2014 respectively, revealed that the water body showed a slight decreasing trend from 2.46 km2 in 2000 to 1.87 km2 in 2014; while, the human settlements and other built-up areas expanded from 586.25 km2 to 891.09 km2 in a span of 14 years. The results also showed a decrease in area under barren land from 68.9847 km2 in 2000 to 15.2602 km2 in the year 2014. Significant correlation was observed between the Digital Number (DN) of near Infrared band and pH and EC. Therefore, it is suggested that the present study can be applied to projects with special relevance to soil scientists, environmental scientists and planning agencies that can use the present study as a baseline data to combat land degradation and conserve land resources in an efficient manner.

Citation: Ahmad, N. and Pandey, P.: Assessment and Monitoring of Land Degradation Using Geospatial Technology in Bathinda District, Punjab, India, Solid Earth Discuss., doi:10.5194/se-2016-172, in review, 2017.
Naseer Ahmad and Puneeta Pandey
Naseer Ahmad and Puneeta Pandey
Naseer Ahmad and Puneeta Pandey

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Short summary
The severity of land degradation was assessed by analysing the physico-chemical parameters and correlating with satellite data in Bathinda district, Punjab. Most of the soil samples were slightly or moderately saline; while, a few were calcareous and alkaline. Comparing the satellite datasets of 2000 and 2014 revealed an increase in settlements and a decrease in barren area. The study can be useful for soil and environmental scientists and planning agencies for restoration of degraded lands.
The severity of land degradation was assessed by analysing the physico-chemical parameters and...
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