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Environments 2015, 2(1), 32-42; doi:10.3390/environments2010032

Effects of Land Use Change on Sediment and Water Yields in Yang Ming Shan National Park, Taiwan

Institute of Geography, Chinese Culture University, Taipei 11114, Taiwan
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Yu-Pin Lin
Received: 20 November 2014 / Accepted: 1 January 2015 / Published: 7 January 2015
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Abstract

The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) is a watershed-based, semi-distributed hydrologic model for simulating hydrological processes at different spatial scales. The SWAT hydrology and erosion/sediment components are first validated after the hydrologic components calibration. The SWAT model also utilizes geographic information system (GIS) and digital elevation model (DEM) to delineate watersheds and extract the stream network. This study applies SWAT model to assess the impacts of land use change on soil and water losses from Yang Ming Shan National Park Watershed in northern Taiwan. Although the government has formulated regulations to limit the development, however, intense human activities, such as farming and building construction, still continue to exist. This study utilized two land-use data periods, one in 1996 and another in 2007, along with the SWAT model to simulate soil and water losses in Yang Ming Shan National Park. Based on the baseline scenario, the SWAT model was also successful in simulating the future scenario. Study results for scenario 2007, as compared to 1996 baseline period indicate that land use change shows forest land decreases about 6.9%, agricultural land increases about 9.5%, and causes sediment yield increase of 0.25 t/ha. Human activities deserve more attention when assessing soil and water losses because of their inevitable impacts. Government needs to modify land development policies and plans for land use change detection using satellite imagery to avoid illegal development activities. View Full-Text
Keywords: DEM; GIS; SWAT model; watershed subdivision; human impacts DEM; GIS; SWAT model; watershed subdivision; human impacts
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Huang, T.C.C.; Lo, K.F.A. Effects of Land Use Change on Sediment and Water Yields in Yang Ming Shan National Park, Taiwan. Environments 2015, 2, 32-42.

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