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Application of RS/GIS in Conservation Studies for Surface and Groundwater Harvesting in Cold Arid Regions of Northwestern Himalayas  Public Access Limited Time

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  Applied Engineering in Agriculture. 36(1): 105-114. (doi: 10.13031/aea.13526) @2020
Authors:   Junaid N. Khan, Syed Rouhullah Ali, Asima Jillani, Ifra Ashraf
Keywords:   Analytical hierarchy process, Geographic Information System, Groundwater harvesting, Remote sensing, Spatial variability, Temporal variability, Water harvesting.

Abstract.

The availability of erratic rainfall and high evapotranspiration causes temporal and spatial variability of water thereby causing crop yield reduction and crop failure. The potential of water harvesting (WH) both groundwater as well as surface water to mitigate the spatial and temporal variability of precipitation. One technique for water harvesting (WH) is to collect excess runoff water both rain and snowmelt, store it for agricultural purposes during dry spells. The present work accentuated the expediency of remote sensing (RS) and geographic information system (GIS) applications in water harvesting studies. The resultant water harvesting potential map prepared was thus classified into three WH potential zones namely, high, medium and low covering an area of 32.82, 10320.10, and 7596.18 ha (<1%, 57.49%, and 42.32%) respectively. The groundwater map in the area was also classified as high potential areas covering 1421.69 ha (7.92%), medium potential areas covering 8762.69 ha (48.81%), and low potential areas covering 7764.72 ha (43.25%). The integrated remote sensing (RS), Geographical Information System (GIS), Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), and analytical hierarchy process (AHP) were found to be efficient methods to recover water and to select suitable water and groundwater harvesting sites in order to ensure better water accessibility to the people for domestic, irrigation and other activities in cold arid regions of northwestern Himalayas.

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