Cropping Intensity in the Aral Sea Basin and Its Dependency from the Runoff Formation 2000–2012
AbstractThis study is aimed at a better understanding of how upstream runoff formation affected the cropping intensity (CI: number of harvests) in the Aral Sea Basin (ASB) between 2000 and 2012. MODIS 250 m NDVI time series and knowledge-based pixel masking that included settlement layers and topography features enabled to map the irrigated cropland extent (iCE). Random forest models supported the classification of cropland vegetation phenology (CVP: winter/summer crops, double cropping, etc.). CI and the percentage of fallow cropland (PF) were derived from CVP. Spearman’s rho was selected for assessing the statistical relation of CI and PF to runoff formation in the Amu Darya and Syr Darya catchments per hydrological year. Validation in 12 reference sites using multi-annual Landsat-7 ETM+ images revealed an average overall accuracy of 0.85 for the iCE maps. MODIS maps overestimated that based on Landsat by an average factor of ~1.15 (MODIS iCE/Landsat iCE). Exceptional overestimations occurred in case of inaccurate settlement layers. The CVP and CI maps achieved overall accuracies of 0.91 and 0.96, respectively. The Amu Darya catchment disclosed significant positive (negative) relations between upstream runoff with CI (PF) and a high pressure on the river water resources in 2000–2012. Along the Syr Darya, reduced dependencies could be observed, which is potentially linked to the high number of water constructions in that catchment. Intensified double cropping after drought years occurred in Uzbekistan. However, a 10 km × 10 km grid of Spearman’s rho (CI and PF vs. upstream runoff) emphasized locations at different CI levels that are directly affected by runoff fluctuations in both river systems. The resulting maps may thus be supportive on the way to achieve long-term sustainability of crop production and to simultaneously protect the severely threatened environment in the ASB. The gained knowledge can be further used for investigating climatic impacts of irrigation in the region. View Full-Text
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Conrad, C.; Schönbrodt-Stitt, S.; Löw, F.; Sorokin, D.; Paeth, H. Cropping Intensity in the Aral Sea Basin and Its Dependency from the Runoff Formation 2000–2012. Remote Sens. 2016, 8, 630.
Conrad C, Schönbrodt-Stitt S, Löw F, Sorokin D, Paeth H. Cropping Intensity in the Aral Sea Basin and Its Dependency from the Runoff Formation 2000–2012. Remote Sensing. 2016; 8(8):630.Chicago/Turabian Style
Conrad, Christopher; Schönbrodt-Stitt, Sarah; Löw, Fabian; Sorokin, Denis; Paeth, Heiko. 2016. "Cropping Intensity in the Aral Sea Basin and Its Dependency from the Runoff Formation 2000–2012." Remote Sens. 8, no. 8: 630.
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