To cope with the growing agrarian crises in Afghanistan, the government (following the fall of the Taliban regime in 2002) has taken measures through cropland expansion “extensification” and switching to mechanized agriculture “intensification”. However, cropland expansion, on one hand, disturbs the existing land use/cover (LULC) and, on other hand, many socio-economic and biophysical factors affect this process. This study was based on the Kabul River Basin to answer two questions: Firstly, what was the change in LULC since 2001 to 2010 and, secondly, what are the drivers of cropland change. We used the spatial calculating model (SCM) for LULC change and binomial logistic regression (BLR) for drivers of cropland change. The net change shows that cropland, grassland, water-bodies, and built-up areas were increased, while forest, unused, and snow/ice areas were decreased. Cropland was expanded by 13%, which was positively affected by low and plain landforms, slope, soil depth, investment on agriculture and distance to the city, while it was negatively affected by plateaus and hill landforms, dry semi-arid, moist semi-arid, and sub-humid zones, precipitation, population, and the distance to roads and water. Climate adaptation measures, cropland protection in flood prone zones, population and rural migration control, farmer access to credit, irrigation, and inputs are necessary for agricultural deployment.
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