Relationship between land use and land classification in the Tahtali Dam Protection Basin (Izmir, Turkey)
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CitationGülersoy, A. E., Gümüș, N., Çelik, M. A., & İlhan, A. (2017). Relationship between land use and land classification in the Tahtalı Dam Protection Basin (İzmir, Turkey). Journal of Environmental Biology, 38(5), 1009-1024.
Aim: The study aims to assess the relationship between land use and the land classes in the Tahtali Dam Protection Basinin terms of sustainable use of natural resources. Methodology: Landsat satellite images were used to determine the current land use and remote sensing was employed to process these images. Results: Land capability classification demonstrates the natural potential of an area. Class I, II, and III lands that are agriculturally important cover 30% of the basin. Class IV, Class VI, and Class VII lands account for 6%, 21%, and 42% of the basin, respectively. Class V lands covered a very small area in the basin and they were not taken into consideration. Finally, Class VIII lands take up merely 1% of the area. The most important kinds of land use in the basin are forests-maquis-garrigues (62.8%), fields (28.7%), residential areas (3.5%), greenhouses (2.3%), and water surface areas (2.7%). There is a mismatch between the land capability classes and their use. In fact, 31% (of 200 km(2)) of the Tahtali Dam Protection Basin is misused. Failure to use lands in line with their capability classes gives rise to certain adverse consequences. Indeed, severe erosion in 54% of the basin takes place in sloping areas devoid of vegetation. Residential waste, intensive use of pesticides-chemical fertilizers, and large industrial facilities pollute dam water and cause land degradation (Pollution levels are higher than that of Class II water). Interpretation: In order to prevent degradation, pollution and siltation of the dam, lands should be used properly and sustainable alternative methods (organic farming, ecological tourism, etc.) should be adopted by locals, particularly the farming industry. An autonomous "Tahtali Dam Protection Basin Forestry Center" that can ensure interinstitutional cooperation should be created.