THE IMPACT OF LAND USE DYNAMICS ON THE SOIL EROSION IN THE PANCHNOI RIVER BASIN, NORTHEAST INDIA
Keywords:soil erosion, RUSLE, LU dynamics, Panchnoi River basin (Northeast India)
Land use (LU) dynamics and its relation to the accelerated soil erosion phenomenon in two broad geomorphic divisions of the Panchnoi River basin of Northeast India have studied. The present study was based on the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE). To measure the impact of the LU dynamics on soil erosion, the basin was divided into two broad geomorphic divisions, i.e., plain zone and hilly zone, and the rate of soil erosion has been estimated separately for both of the geomorphic divisions. It has been found that in the plain zone, LU dynamics significantly accelerated soil erosion—from 0.52 ton/ha/yr in 1990 to 0.94 ton/ha/yr in 2015. Similarly, the vegetation density decreased significantly in the mountainous and hilly zone as the mean Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) value changed from 0.45 in 1990 to 0.35 in 2015, which accelerated soil erosion from 12.06 ton/ha/yr to 18.30 ton/ha/yr from 1990 to 2015. The study indicates that soil erosion may give rise to a severe environmental as well as economic problem in the Panchnoi river basin, which may trigger issues related to the soil fertility of the basin area.
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